Friday, May 28, 2010

the divine commodity-our genie in a bible

i just finished reading 'the divine commodity' by skye jethani. there are a few moments where god pushed words from this book deep into my heart. one passage that has been haunting me (in a good way) for the past two weeks reads as follows...
we have a certainty about god and his ways that leads us to replace the mystery of faith with manageable spiritual formulas... Regardless of the medium, we utter phrases like 'god always...,' 'god never...,' 'god only...,' and even 'god hates...' with flippant regularity. such absolute pronouncements should rarely be spoken by fallible humans and then only with much trepidation.
the abundance of our definitive words about god shows that we don't view him as a great mystery anymore, but as a sterile calculation without ambiguity or obscurity. and, not surprisingly, this definitive god usually conforms nicely to our personal desires and politics. the resurgence of the prosperity gospel movement is one sign of this. quoted in a time magazine article titled "does god want you to be rich?" television preacher joyce meyers says, 'who would want to get in on something where you're miserable, poor broke and ugly and you just have to muddle through until you get to heaven? i believe god wants to give us nice things.' she has a point. who would want an uncontrollable, mysterious and holy god when you could have a genie in a bible?
pg 35
mystery or math?
art or science?
beyond comprehension or completely figured out?
more on this later...
peace to you,

Sunday, April 04, 2010

happy easter...he is risen indeed

an excerpt from our easter liturgy this morning...

Yours is the glory, O God, for raising Jesus from the darkness of death.
Yours is the glory, O Christ, for being prepared, through your sacrificial love, to conquer death and give us the gift of eternal life.
And, as if that were not enough, you greet us by name, as you greeted Mary in the garden, and transform our lives forever with your Easter life.
Risen Lord, we worship and adore you .
We pray that the Holy Spirit, your life in us, will so conform us to your image that we radiate your glory here, through our rejoicing and praise, and in all the places where people’s lives are still affected by the powers of sin and death.
Yours is the glory, risen Lord Jesus, and we rejoice that ‘endless is the victory that you over death have won’.
Alleluia! Christ is risen!
Christ is risen indeed! Amen
peace to you,

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

the upper room l.i.v.e.s.

so we have shifted gears a little at the upper room. we have been meeting at our house and have entered a time of regrouping. in this time of preparing we have been challenging each other to "live" by some simple disciplines. we believe that jesus came to give us life abundant and we believe that life is only experienced as we are discipled by the one who showed us what perfect humanity in touch with perfect divinity looked like. as we follow in the footsteps of jesus we truly live. this is what that looks like from week to week for us:
l - listen to god - for one hour each week we set aside time to quietly listen to the one who created us and speaks life into us.
i - invest in others - we pour ourselves into the lives of at least two people each week. one person that is a part of our community and one that is not.
v - versed in truth - we read one chapter from the gospels (the best way to know jesus is to spend regular time reading his story), one chapter from somewhere else in scripture and one great, inspiring piece of literature.
e - eat with others - this is one of my favorites. we take time to be face to face (not facebook) with people and share food and drink. we do this with at least two people each week. one person that is part of our community and one that is not.
s - sent into the world - each one of us lives as though we are to be the light of the world. we desire to bring peace, love, hope, courage, patience, grace and truth into the places we find ourselves each day. we live as sent people.
l-isten to god - 1 hour
i-nvest in people - 2 people
v-ersed in truth - 3 books
e-at with others - 2 people
s-ent to the world - 1 for all
it is a challenge to follow in the footsteps of jesus, but what a feeling to know that we are his disciples...that is what it means to truly "live".
peace to you,