This brilliant turn of phrase, the title of Chapter 19 in Brian McLaren’s Finding Our Way Again, which some of you may remember as our Lenten study book two years ago, comes from McLaren’s belief that the natural outcome for a people who call themselves Christians is to be Christ in the world. As McLaren puts it, “The purpose of the ancient way and the ancient practices is not to make us more religious. It is to make us more alive. Alive to God. Alive to our spouses, parents, children, neighbors, strangers, and yes, even our enemies.”
Do we, like St. Francis, see an incarnate world in which God is in all of creation? Do we, like Brother Lawrence, see God in everything we do? Have we caught God’s vision of the world? Do we seek to participate with God as co-creators (a word often used by Martin Smith) in a world desperate to experience God’s presence? It’s not about making a longer to-do list. McLaren quotes a friend who interprets this to-do list as meaning, “give more, read more, pray more, evangelize more, attend more, learn more, try more, work more, rest more, and fail less.” If we interpret McLaren’s meaning in that way, it’s no wonder we’re already feeling exhausted and stretched to the limit! No, it’s about “counting what we’re already doing” or, put differently, it’s about “mak[ing] the things we’re already doing [meaningful].”
McLaren concludes the chapter by saying, “The ancient way is about joining God in the spending of every day.” This small group will share the ways in which we are already finding God in our relationships, in our activities, and in the world. It will focus on our spiritual awareness and re-cognition of God’s presence in the world God created.
As God filled the world with meaning, the meaning can fill us spiritually.
When: Four Thursdays, October 24, 31, November 7, 14
4:00 p.m.-5:30 p.m.
Facilitator: The Rev. Cn. Dick Hall