"Are you a Good Witch or a Bad Witch?"
These famous words from the 1939 film, The Wizard of Oz, have been ringing in my head for the past few weeks. I think many of us, if asked that question, would have the same response Dorothy had, "I'm not a witch at all!" However, I'd ask you to really think about that question. A good witch, or a bad witch?
When we think of the bad witch in Oz, I don't think she was necessarily as bad as she was selfish. Her personal agenda came before serving the people she was responsible to. She cared more about what she wanted to do and not what she was supposed to do. And sometimes in our daily lives we tend to show up to serve with motives that aren't humble or selfless.
Or are you a good witch? When I think of the good witch in Oz, I think of someone who was trying to play the hero, but was a little fake and one-dimensional. It looked like she was trying to be the good guy, but in the end, she wasn't effective at all in stopping the forces of evil. And maybe sometimes we try to take on this "Good Witch" persona when we try to do the work of the Lord in our own strength and not His.
When I honestly reflect, I find myself leaning towards one of these flawed personas. I try to do everything by myself in my own strength, being the best Children's Pastor I can be, or I (yes, even I) can be tempted to have a less-than-selfless attitude and want to put my personal needs before those of others. Maybe you can relate.
But the good news is you're not a witch at all! You are ________________ from _________, New Jersey (or some other state) -- who was once a sinner, but now stand redeemed by Christ! And you don't have to "do life with Jesus" all by yourself. The Holy Spirit is faithful, when we ask him, to rid us of our selfishness, and equip us to effectively minister to others.
"In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death - even death on a cross!...Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, "children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation." Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the word of life."
(Phil 2:5-8, 14-16)
Lord, empty us of ourselves and fill us with your wisdom, your truth, and your love to reach a lost world. Amen.
Which witch from Oz do you relate to? Do you find yourself, like the Bad Witch, seeking only selfish ambitions? Or are you, like the Good Witch, trying with your own strength to fight the forces of evil? What can we learn from both Oz witches about how to fight perceived evil?