Thursday, 23 August 2012

A letter...

Dear God,
I'm trying this - writing a letter to you - because Bonnie has asked me to.  Her blog always inspires and challenges me, so I try to respond when I can.
This letter feels as if it should be a book.
It's simply this:
How do I live the life you want?
I've just re-read Ian Morgan Cron's Chasing Francis, about St Francis of Assisi.  I've been reminded of the necessity and benefits of living a simple life. Frugality, simplicity, generosity, humility, grace, freedom...
And I look at my life.
I look.
I see attempts to live simply.
I see an endeavour to be generous.
I see a gaining, sometimes, in humility.
I see a small devotion to things of you: to encouragement from others, mainly through writings; to worship music; to calls to prayer.
Most of these things exist outside of my 'church' life.
My church to which I am called meets in an ancient building once a week. It sits mostly in silence apart from prescribed responses. Words of hymns, sometimes choruses, substitute for worship.  A small part of my church meets with me after the ritualistic liturgy is completed, even, at times, over a cup of coffee.
I love the people of my church. I crave to live with them in a way which would honour you.
Yet our church life is confined to an hour on a Sunday, if that.
I long to live in and with my church, so that my world life is not separate. I long to 'be' church to others.
But how?
Answers on a postcard, please.
Love from Angie

PS Two answers come to mind:

1.  Hebrews 12:2 'Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the Author and Perfector of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.'
2. The prayer of St Francis:
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace,
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy;

O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.

For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

Probably enough.

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