Sunday, July 22, 2012

Out of....Our....Dark Alleys....Gifts.

“I am the blind alleys of all your paths, for when you no longer know how to go any further, then you have reached Me, though you are not aware of it….I am a prisoner of your finiteness, because my love has made Me your prisoner…... I am in your anxiety because I have shared it by suffering it." Words from last week's blog. Since they were written, our world has surely changed. With change always comes a challenge. This is the root cause of so much anger. We were just fine where we were, and in what we were doing. Now something happens that changes all of that. Death and violence, have entered the picture of our reality, and we are radically changed. We will never ever be able to return to the way things were. We can wish, and wish, but we wish in vain. We can pray and pray, for the return of what was. God IS not present in the “was ness”, (to coin a phrase), He is only present in the "isness" of life. He can only be found in the here and now. As long as we are rooted in the memories of the past, no matter how attractive they appear to be, God is not found there. We have to let go of the past, to embrace the present and to prepared to meet our God in whatever the reality is. We have been extended the invitation, "come rest In me". Easy to sing and say. So very, very difficult to do. Why? In order to have the courage and the confidence to “rest" in God we have to face this tough question? What has been our experience when in moments of doubt, despair and desolation, and dissolution, we were able to go to a place of refuge. Even better still we had the welcoming tender, loving, strong arms of a person. In that embrace, we were safe and secure. In that place the human need of all of us human beings is met. Our need to be warm, safe and secure are met. The place we can call sacred. In other words it is a holy place, because of the encounter that tales place there. The person is to called holy, because in and through that person's presence The Presence of a living, life giving God becomes a reality. We have had a deep, authentic religious experience. This life affirming is what has to be brought to the Liturgical celebration. Because we have just had the dying and rising become incarnate for us. With the celebration it becomes intensified and becomes the source of strength for those who will be placed in our path. All we have to do is honestly and truthfully tell our story. Grace will take care of the rest. We have to be eternally thank-full there was a place or better still, if there was a person? It is essential that we have that person or place, or at least have the secure memories of the experience to return to again and again. Why then is this essential? Because as I now know, without a loving, life affirming relationship the possibility of having the living God of Jesus Christ will be very difficult. I have had to learn over the years the following truth; “What we have in our human relationships is that what we have with God.” (The understanding of which, I am not there fully.) How many say there is no God, yet have a great deep love for another person or persons? Their ability to love can only come from God, Who is The Source of all love. We have such a narrow concept of God, that it MUST be constantly shattered. Why? So there is more space for grace to work in. Keep this picture in mind, when we say we are broken and scattered all over the place, we now provided a great space for God to work in. This creative God-worker, we call The Holy Spirit. Just as in the case of the original chaos (read Genesis), the Spirit overshadows our brokenness and brings it all together as a new creation. We are reminded of the scriptures "behold I make all things new”. A creation so much larger than before the breaking. Then we will experience a new Heaven and a new Earth. The old has passed away. We are brought back to seek out and search out in a new way an ancient, eternal mystery of our faith. We are in need to visit again what we learned from our Paschal-Resurrection-Ascension-Pentecost experience, that death is not an end it is a new beginning. The beginning of a new way of seeing and being. A new way of living in the real world without the need for medicators such as, booze, drugs, sex, work, religion, shopping, relationships, food, T.V. sports, exercise, the list goes on and on. We are always challenged to go deeper into the darkness. We all will, at sometime(s), find ourselves lost the blind alleys not knowing the way. We of ourselves will not know, or have the wisdom to find, the way. This is scary. This is fear-full. This shatters us. We face the limitations of our sight and knowledge. Humanly speaking we have come to the end of our abilities to cope. Spiritually speaking we are in the best place possible. These are our moments will reveal to us the real truth about, grace. We begin to understand the saying, “there is no cheap grace”. He who did not intend this earth shattering experience uses it to reveal to us ,in an a new way who He/She is. This new understanding of faith reveals a new Reality (God). This new Reality becomes the source of a new life affirming, creative ,way of living, given only to be shared.