Sunday, January 4, 2009

"What would Jesus do?" How far are you willing to go?

Ed Dobson, a retired pastor, prolific author and wannabe soccer icon decided to find out last year what it would be like literally to "live like Jesus". Everything from Old Testament dietary limitations (no chicken cheese burritos) to picking up strangers who needed a ride. Read the story.
I'm impressed with Ed. He's no crackpot luny. He has been quite the example of what it means to go into the world for the sake of Christ while leading and transitioning a large church in Grand Rapids, MI.

Not only that, I know Ed. I sat in his Dean of Students' office one day as a college senior arguing the point that I should be able to grow a mustache (they were taboo at my school then) if older guys in another related school could grow them. I was surprised when Ed told me that he didn't disagree with me, but it wasn't his call. It was then I began to see past his office in a fundamentalist college and into his heart.

A few years later I was back at the same university attending seminary. In response to a major inconsistency in a disciplinary matter with a high profile football player, I challenged Ed in a letter that for the sake of his integrity he should resign and make better use of his life. I knew that this particular "oversight" was also made higher up than Ed's office, although at this time he was the university's VP. I was again surprised when the phone in our apartment rang and the familiar Irish brogue said, "This is Ed Dobson. Thank you for your letter." What I had written resonated with him and he appreciated my encouragement.

So don't read this story and think he's totally wierd. He's just totally sold out to Christ, and decided to do something radical to learn more about who He is. My hat's off to you Ed.

And God bless you in your struggle with ALS. Here's one of your former students who is proud of how you've followed God's call.

And, yes, Ed, soccer is still the most popular game in the world. You don't have to remind us.


marie said...

I happened to read that article in the Saturday Virginian Pilot---a free one delivered at my condo.
Anyway, I was really impressed with him and appreciated his honesty on how hard it was to live like Jesus. His comment that Jesus was a troubling individual made me chuckle.
Ed sounds like a really cool guy.

Karen said...

Have you read his latest book? Prayers and Promises When Facing a Life-Threatening Illness: 30 Short Morning and Evening Reflections

It is very good. I bought it after hearing him speak at TRBC one Sun. night. I have no such illness, but learned so much from reading it- he has touched something very real and holy.

Rick Lawrenson said...

I have not read it, Karen, although another friend suggested it to me. I'll have to get it.