Saturday, June 21, 2014
The fullness of life is found in God and Community, this of a peculiar faith
Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.
Life is lived fully in the grace of a community of God and witness. It is this relationship that gives life her form and character, her color and hue. Stress points and stretch points become angles of wisdom revealing a peculiar faith.
This “peculiar faith” becomes the ground of hope for community and witness, crying out for God as a deer panteth for water. It becomes the glue that holds community and its movement together. I think upon this peculiar faith and wonder who shall be willing to step out and experience the love of God beyond the comforts of home. Shall anyone choose to receive the invitation of the divine and say yes, oh yes to the creator, sustainer and rock of life herself. Who, beloved, shall have the courage to receive God’s plan for their life? Or shall the safety, comfort, familial relationships and most of all familiarity of this world be presented as the everlasting, the cradle of the divine, even faith as Caesar calls. I think this to be difficult, even challenging without the spirit of divine as the people I encounter expect a particular vision of the divine and the works of the divine rooted in a common, understandable, rational faith.
The aforementioned becomes ever more critical as we cannot serve the people and systems grounded in empire and white supremacy and a God which calls beyond such. We must be mindful of the words of Jesus in Matthew 6:24
You cannot serve God and mammon. No one can serve two masters; for either they will hate the one, and love the other; or else they will hold to one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. No one can serve two masters.
Reflecting upon the text I find it to be somewhat interesting that there are some who seek daily to blend, compromise even to partner the two masters. Mindful that there are those who use the need to survive in the “real” world as an excuse to compromise the very gospel so identified by the sacrifice of Jesus on the Cross, I ask, shall the gospel be made less for the sake of living in the “real” world where economy of oppression is the mode of transaction and not God’s love. Far be it for the one called to love reject this love because of worldly concerns.
That said, the one who truly receives God's calling must be willing to step out of their comfort zone to meet their God on God's terms. This "Coming Out" moment can be most difficult yet it is a sacred space of trust not to be taken lightly. The one who steps out shall receive a sincere blessing seldom found in bastions of comfort.
They must embrace the words, "the cross before me, the world behind me" with all sincerity and license, a song sung yet seldom believed, interpreted to give solace and comfort. Resting and loving in God and community becomes a most holy and sacred space of joy where one can feel the presence of God. Beloved, there is no mystery here for the fullness of life and this characterized as liberty is love in God. The fullness of life is a life in God and in a sacred holy spirit filled community and nowhere or in no one else.
Beloved, we are called to love within the complexities of this life. To embrace the complex human condition in love. The one who would embrace the cross then must embrace a cross intimately engaged in the joys and sorrows of this life.