Pick a little, talk a little

Oct 3, 2017 by

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

blog-logo-webToday while reading in Genesis, something really stuck out to me. When Jacob kissed his father, he knew full well he’d be betraying him.

It got me thinking about how awful that was! I could never share the holy kiss with a sister knowing I’d be betraying her soon. Or could I?

Have I never saluted a sister and then later gossiped about her? Unfortunately, yes, I have. Have I greeted a sister but really had a frustration brewing within my heart? Sadly, that has happened.

On Sunday morning, greeting those sisters that don’t actually kiss you, but rather jutt their chins out, don’t I just get frustrated? Yup, that’s me.

How about stretching the truth just a bit to make someone not seem so great? I’d be lying to say that’s never happened.

The fact is, I have to ask myself, “Am I any better than Jacob or Judas?”

On further examination of the Word, I saw reference to three other situations where the holy kiss was used as a predecessor to betrayal. Oh, how easy it is to chalk it up to an old Biblical fallacy. I’m no different. I’m plagued as to why.

Am I not a follower of Jesus Christ saved by the blood that he shed? Have I not committed my life to my God? Have I not joined myself with a body of believers?

The conclusion I have come up with is simply that I don’t understand the holy kiss as I should. If I’m willing to kiss a sister (or shake the hand of a brother) and then later betray them, even in some small way, I must not value them nor what the kiss symbolizes.

Oh what shame to sit here with thoughts running wild in my failure of being a sister and daughter. As if to hang my head in shame, I must walk away from typing and repent of this grave sin.

I don’t say that lightly as if to put some word together for your entertainment. This is a tragedy. No wonder people turn from the faith and claim hypocrites are among the “holy.”

So why do we share the holy kiss? Why is it important?

The holy kiss is a greeting. To me, it is something I practice with my sisters in Christ. It’s a sign of our closeness. I wouldn’t greet a stranger with a holy kiss unless they clearly practiced it and were a follower of Christ Jesus.

I believe it is important when practiced properly because it signifies a bond. I believe fully that Jesus would greet in such a way. Sadly, most Christians have no clue what it is and do not practice it. In fact, many in my own fellowship only kiss within the four walls of the meeting house for fear of being mistaken as homosexual. What a shame. To live in fear of the world is to pass the power within you to Satan.

I’d like to suggest that we followers of Jesus Christ examine our hearts. Meditate on why on Sunday we go around kissing or avoiding kissing our brothers and sisters. Is it for righteous reasons such as a unresolved conflict, or is it due to fear and uncomfortableness. Do you practice this kiss because of tradition or because you feel strong godly love and commitment to your brother or sister?

I commit to only greet in love the people I love. That means I better examine my heart and seek out any reasons I may have put a wedge between my family and I.

I also commit to greeting my family wherever the Spirit guides. I don’t care one little bit what this world thinks of me. I strongly doubt it thinks I’m homosexual. I commit to not criticize how others choose to practice the Holy Kiss (even if I have to literally refrain from greeting the person for a time).

I do love my brothers and sisters in Christ. It doesn’t mean I don’t fail to understand them or how they live. Unfortunately, ignorance breeds more ignorance. I am willing to learn and grow. So here’s to not being known as the kiss of betrayal, but rather the kiss of Holy love!

Nicci Price is a member of the Covington, Ohio, district of the Old German Baptist Brethren Church, New Conference. She blogs at Pilgrim Nicci Journeying On, where this post first appeared.


Comments Policy

Mennonite World Review invites readers’ comments on articles. To promote constructive dialogue, editors select the comments that appear, just as we do with letters to the editor in print. These decisions are final. Writers must sign their first and last names; anonymous comments are not accepted. Comments do not appear until approved and are posted during business hours. Comments may be reproduced in print, and may be edited if selected for print.