SUBTITLE: Death, Destruction, Demise: Hooray!
Unlike Calvinism, and the Puritan ethic that pervades much of modern Christian America;
I believe that bright, shiny, outward 'success' is not the only sign of an inward grace.
Don't get me wrong, it's great when we are on 'top'.
But when we find ourselves on 'the bottom',
it doesn't mean there is SOMETHING WRONG here.
To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heavens...
Jacob met Divinity face-to-face, in struggle,
and henceforth walked with a limp.
My thoughts below are primarily meant to encourage those of us who are in struggle, limping:
- If you feel crappy
- If you think you are a square peg in a round hole
- If the folks around you judge you, and you are tending to agree
- If you are wishing for some 'do-overs' and hoping for a miracle
- If you are tempted to believe you are on the WRONG track, a FAILURE,
- If you are experiencing Death, Destruction, Demise...
Perhaps your spiritual reality is just the opposite of your outward experience:
perhaps it is time to validate YOUR unique PATH,
keep your eyes on God (and not on 'the world, the flesh or the devil') and KEEP GOING!
as Paul said:
Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God....
I just listened to an hour interview with Matthew Fox.
From my perspective, I found this interview covered a lot of ground in Christian life:
sweeping through some of our ancient and modern experience.
I came away excited about the changes that we and God are bringing about in structures as well as cultures, and of course, as always, members (individuals) in particular.
I was encouraged in my faith and in my personal journey, which is currently challenging (about par for the course ; )
I find that I am more inspired to send Easter greetings, than I have been for a very long time; so here we go...
My favorite Christian Teacher, Dr Bruce Morgan, used to say this often:
Our God is a consuming fire,
who burns up everything that is not God
It isn't always comfortable, or easy...
WAIT A MINUTE: what am I saying?!
Let's be honest:
This process is almost Never comfortable or easy.
Because we Will Not let it be so!
My resistance, and judgment, and invalidation, and habits, and emotions, and stories...
make changing Very Painful and Hard!
But, the changes come.
Regardless of our complaining and foot-dragging,
we can trust God in the Long Run to bring us into conformity with Christ.
In this relationship, experiencing this BE-ingness, lies comfort and ease: the meeting of all our need.
Us as souls, and us together as the body of Christ:
we die and we are born again:
again and again...
Into more alignment with our true selves:
God with us, God in us, God through us, God as us:
this is the Good News. Hallelujah!
Meanwhile, DEATH comes before Resurrection.
I appreciate how Leonard Cohen put it:
It's a cold and it's a broken Hallelujah...
In this transformative journey we often look bad, and feel worse.
AND then WE 'add insult to injury' by making up discouraging stories about ourselves and our choices...
But really, so what?
- Is looking bad, really SO bad? Who do we really Have to impress?
- Is falling down really the end of the world? Can't we just get up, now!
- If we go play in the mud, a shower works just fine to send us off, to play, again...
It is in this time of increasing pressure and cold, dark endings, that the gift of FAITH and HOPE carries us through:
- In some way, we have seen, heard or known with our spiritual senses the Still, Small Voice that guides on our unique journey...... God is HERE still, even as we cry: 'My God, my God, why didst Thou forsake me?'
- We have seen, heard and known with our physical senses: Morning follows Evening, since the first day...... The Sun will rise tomorrow, as well: count on it!
- We have received the gift of example and forerunner: our friend Jesus seemed to come to a messy, inglorious end; then transformed into a beautiful, glorious shining of the Way, the Truth, and the Light...... We have the honor to follow in his footsteps.
- Let us walk, and keep walking.
- Let us trust God through all our ups and downs; and ask God to open us to Faith, Hope and Love: to keep going through whatever Death, Destruction, Demise we may find ourselves experiencing.
- Let us Always remember: the end of the story is already written (Spoiler Alert: we all go to the seashore ; )
The Spirit himself doth testify with our spirit, that we are children of God; and if children, also heirs, heirs, indeed, of God, and heirs together of Christ -- if, indeed, we suffer together, that we may also be glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of the present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory about to be revealed in us...
May God assist each of us us to:
allow God to bless us and keep us,
enjoy God's countenance shining upon us,
and bring us the experience of peace, as well as all the TLC we can stand.
Comfort and Joy to you in whatever phase of Life, Death and/or Metamorphosis you may be experiencing.
You are in very good company.
Blessed Eastertide, Wendy
So if any one be in Christ, there is a new creation; the old things have passed away; behold all things have become new(rinse and repeat ; )