Thoughts to Ponder are my musings regarding community, things of the Spirit, and living as a Christ-follower. I don't offer the words of a professional or an expert; just a fellow traveler and explorer. Please don't take my musings more serious than I do. I've discovered a long time ago that I do not hold the keys of knowledge or wisdom. If I did, I misplaced them somewhere...typical.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

A New Dawn Breaking

"When you see the dawn breaking, you think back to the darkness in a new way. 'Sin' is not simply the breaking of a law. It is the missing of an opportunity. Having heard the echoes of a voice, we are called to come and meet the Speaker. We are invited to be transformed by the voice itself, the word of the gospel--the word which declares that evil has been judged, that the world has been put to rights, that earth and heaven are joined forever, and that new creation has begun. We are called to become people who can speak and live and paint and sing that word so that those who have heard its echoes can come and lend a hand in the larger project. That is the opportunity that stands before us, as gift and possibility. Christian holiness is not (as people often imagine) a matter of denying something good. It is about growing up and grasping something better.

"Made for spirituality, we wallow in introspection. Made for joy, we settle for pleasure. Made for justice, we clamour for vengeance. Made for relationship, we insist on our own way. Made for beauty, we are satisfied with sentiment. But new creation has already begun. The sun has begun to rise. Christians are called to leave behind,in the tomb of Jesus Christ, all that belongs to the brokenness and incompleteness of the present world. It is time, in the power of the Spirit, to take up our proper role, our fully human role, as agents, heralds, and stewards of the new day that is dawning. That, quite simply, is what it means to be Christian: to follow Jesus Christ into the new world, God's new world, which he has thrown open before us." -N. T. Wright, Simply Christian, Harper Collins/Haper San Francisco

Far too often we have bought into the idea that the goal of Christian living is to be set free from this world; to escape to heaven. This is manifested in our hymnody ("This world is not my home, I'm just a passing through...") and in some popular end time theology (the Left Behind novels). We're just trying to get out of here. As Rob Bell put it (not an exact quote) "We're just waiting for something to happen."

But the goal of Christian living is to be God's agents here on earth. To shine the light of his rule on all nations, all peoples. To bring forth justice, beauty, goodness, and overflowing love to a world where those things are sadly missing. This isn't about spending a week on some short term mission, or occasionally working at some inner city soup kitchen or serving in the Ronald MacDonald House once a year. There is nothing wrong with these activities. But somehow our day to day living must reflect God's kingdom. Everyone with whom we come in contact is part of God's creation. Everyone needs to experience an expression of God's overflowing love.

So how are we doing as God's agents? Are we touching and loving on everyone with whom we come in contact? Think about it. -Darryl


Brittany said...

Can I start quoting you in Bible and Seminar? I'll sound like a genius...or at least the daughter of one. ^_^

Darryl said...

Sure, why not? I quote only the best!