By Justin Rossow
I grew up with The Muppet Show, and I clearly remember a scene where Fozzie Bear sings his rendition of “I Got Rhythm!” Fozzie obviously doesn’t have any rhythm, and that’s what makes the shtick funny. By the end of the scene, Fozzie’s accompanist, Rowlf the Dog, changes the score to read, “I ain’t got rhythm!” Fozzie, blissfully ignorant, sings along. Wocka wocka!
My kids grew up with Phineas and Ferb, and I clearly remember an episode where the title characters are trying to get the drummer from Love Händel to come out of retirement for one last gig. The drummer, now working as a librarian, complains that he’s lost the beat. In fact, he comically sings, “I ain’t got rhythm,” all the while creating a wicked groove with library books and a date stamp without knowing it. Funny. Like Fozzie, but in reverse.
Sometimes, in the course of your ordinary, everyday routine, it’s hard to tell when you’ve got a healthy rhythm of rest, work, and play, and when this world’s arrhythmia has infected your heart. Sometimes, you get to be Rowlf and make some minor adjustments to accommodate a friend who doesn’t have very good rhythm right now, and just can’t see it for themselves. And sometimes you get to play the role of Phineas and Ferb, and help someone see that they have gotten into a groove without even noticing.
The body of Christ works like that: we put up with each other, and accommodate each other, and encourage each other, all the while knowing that others will have to put up with our own arrhythmia in one way or another. Each of us can lose the beat from time to time, but in the Spirit, we can still “make beautiful music together.” (Wocka wocka!)
Ephesians 4:2–3 (NIV)
Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.
Heavenly Father, thank you for the people you have put around me! For all their faults and failings, they are a beautiful gift you have given me!
Lord Jesus, give me your heart of compassion for those whose imbalanced lives bump up against my own imbalances. Make me eager to overlook minor irritations and quick to forgive unintended slights.
Come, Holy Spirit, and strengthen our bond of peace. Today, I pray for people in my faith family I tend to have trouble getting along with, especially …
Make us all more humble and gentle, more patient and peaceful. Make us all more like Jesus, in whose name I pray. Amen.
Editor’s Note: This devotion comes from Day 35 of Come, Holy Spirit: A Daily Discipleship Travel Log for Easter to Pentecost by Justin Rossow, available from Next Step Press.
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