Posted by: Dr Churchill | December 4, 2017

Christmas: It is the very love of Christ that now urges us on…

Much like the train of life that we all ride on — the scenery going by, changes constantly, and that is what transports us gently from one place to another in comfort and style reforming the landscape and the lines of passage — even when we traverse the haughty and angular Swiss Alps… from the comfort of a well heated caboose.

Screen Shot 2017-11-30 at 4.26.37 AM

Similar to that, reformation is the perpetual process of conversion that is needed by all individuals and institutions, and is akin to change — since it’s always present in the process of Life’s journey…

In fact reformation is the everlasting truth. Change that is. The only constant thing we have is change, so reformation comes riding the coattails of change.

I believe also in the change maker movement of the Holy Spirit… especially these days of Advent of Jesus that we celebrate the last few weeks before Christmas. The advent of Jesus into Jerusalem atop a royal ass, with the people rejoicing the arrival of the Messiah.

Maranatha…

Our Lord cometh…

Change has come.

What a great greeting for Christians…

Speaks of Change writ large.

Movement is change and vice versa…

Maranatha.

Screen Shot 2017-11-30 at 4.27.02 AM

Because change movements are the energy-building stages of things, before they become memories, institutions, governments, monuments, museums, or even perpetual motion machines.

The Reformation of Spirit, is a convergence of hopeful and liberating Christian themes, is happening on all continents, in all denominations, at all levels—and at a rather quick pace. Emerging Christianity is both longing for and moving toward a way of following Jesus that has much more to do with lifestyle than with belief.

We cannot keep avoiding what Jesus actually emphasized and mandated. In this most urgent time, “it is the very love of Christ that now urges us” (2 Corinthians 5:14).

If Christianity’s prime contribution to humanity can be shifted from teaching correct beliefs to practicing the way of love as Jesus taught, then our whole understanding and experience of the church could be transformed . . . [into] a school of love.

The How in rebuilding Christianity from the bottom up:
We are on a quest for a new kind of Christianity—a faith liberated from the institutional and dogmatic straightjackets we inherited, a way of life that integrates the personal and the social dimensions of spirituality, a practice that integrates centered contemplation and dynamic action. In our quest, we must remember how easy it is to self-sabotage; we must remember that how we get there will determine where we will be.

Screen Shot 2017-11-30 at 3.33.45 AM

I see four areas where many of us need to pay special attention to the how, so we can be examples and midwives of emerging Christianity instead of its accidental saboteurs.

First, we need to process our pain, anger, and frustration with the institutional or inherited forms of church. . . . [If] we learn to process our pain, if we join Jesus in the way of redemptive suffering and gracious forgiveness, we will become sweeter and better, not meaner and bitter, and we will become the kinds of people who embody an emerging Christian faith indeed.

Second, we need to manage our idealism. . . . The emerging church will never be a perfect church; it will always be a community of sinner-saints and stumbling bumblers touched by radical grace. Liberated by grace from a perfectionistic idealism, we can celebrate the beauty of what is emerging instead of letting its imperfections frustrate us.

Third, we need to focus our circle of responsibility. . . . That means letting go of the things you can’t control—which includes the decisions that popes, bishops, pastors, councils, and church boards may make. . . . [If] you can’t get your congregation to care about homeless people, you can get involved yourself. If you can’t get your congregation to treat gay folks with respect, you can do so around your kitchen table. If you can’t get your church to focus on cross-racial relationships, you can take a step this Sunday and visit a church where you’re the minority, and from there, begin to build relationships. You don’t need anyone’s vote or permission to do these things: you only need to exercise your own responsibility and freedom.

Fourth, we need to start small and celebrate small gains. One of the curses of late modernity was the belief that unless something was big and well-publicized, it didn’t quite count…

The God of little things and humble people… that is the God, the Messiah, we expect when we call the greeting Maranatha.

The lord cometh…

Screen Shot 2017-11-19 at 3.39.37 PM

Maranatha to the Reforming Lord…

Yet we ought to recall that Jesus spoke of tiny mustard seeds, of a little yeast in a lot of dough, of a little flock, of the greatness of smallness, of a secret good deed and a simple cup of cold water given to one in need.

And that is the biggest thing there is: The God of little things has arrived…

Happy Advent

Cheers

Dr Churchill

PS:

As we process our pain, manage our idealism, do what’s doable, and celebrate the small and beautiful, we discover that all around us, new forms and expressions of Christian faith are emerging. Through a better how, a better where is possible.


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: