Posted in Different Moments, Different Scriptures

approaching the Holy

As we head further into the week before Easter, referred to as “Holy Week”, it’s good for us to pause and reflect on the direction we’re heading. Many of us have gone through these rhythms before, and there is a dangerous familiarity. Dangerous because we may once again miss out on an opportunity for God to stir or accomplish something new in our hearts and lives.

But also dangerous because, if we’re honest, many of us hesitate to move in the direction of the Holy. Our hesitancy is often born of the same hesitancy seen in Adam and Eve in the garden, as God called out “Where are you?” (Genesis 3:9). Humanity’s response was to be afraid of a God who sought intimacy with them (Genesis 3:10), and it seems that same response is readily available for us still today. This is not only how we respond to God, but often how we respond to one another as well. We’ve been created for intimacy with God and one another, but so often we are hesitant, we run in the opposite direction, or deflect with hurry or humor. At best, we may even manufacture moments of emotional exhibitionism as a way of staying in control/power of our own vulnerability.

Yet this week we purposefully look in the direction of a God who became human, and submitted Himself (in Love for you and I) to one of the most humiliating and painful deaths imaginable (Philippians 2:8). He wasn’t anxiously curating His image so that everyone would know the best aspects of what He was up to. He was able to fully rest, even on His way to the cross, in the unchanging Love of the Father. His trust that God’s good redemption comes no matter what happens along the way, set Him free to offer Himself in intimacy as a friend even in that final week – even knowing some were preparing to betray Him.

What would it look like for you and I to approach the Holiness of this God who pursues us in a new way this year? What would it mean for you to “take off your sandals”, recognizing this place we stand in His presence, has been made Holy. What is on your calendar these next 5 days that you could reschedule for later? What would prevent you even in these next few moments, from pausing to recognize there is a Divine Love who calls out “Where are you?” right now?

Nothing in the experience of Adam and Eve up to that point had taught them to be afraid or hesitant when responding to the Love of God who seeks them in the garden. The only difference in that moment, was they had begun listening to the whispers of a deceiver who said, “Are you sure?” Questioning the Truth of God’s Word began to make them question His Love for them, leading to disorder in their relationship. Along with such a disorder, their relationship with each other followed and continued into the next generations.

We believe that in Jesus – we have been reconciled to God. Brought into a rightly-ordered relationship once again. As we approach the next several days, know there is a God who calls out to you “Where are you?” Know also that Jesus emerges from the shadows of a hidden humanity, speaking on our behalf “Here we are.”

Will we follow Him daily into the light, where we can know God fully even as we are fully known (and Loved)?

Will we remember that such a re-ordering invites our relationships with one another to be securely approached in the foundation of such Love as well?

Posted in Different Scriptures, Spoken Word

1 Peter 2:1-3

Because you have been born again
Of imperishable Good News
It should make more of an impact than
To inspire you to shine your shoes

Rid yourself of all the things
That proclaim the old way
The elements that cause all forms
Of relationship decay

Malice, guile, and slander
Or being insincere,
All these declare envy and self
Over allowing others near

Our world wants so deeply
To know and to be known
Loving vulnerability declares
Jesus is on the throne

The living Word enfleshed as man
Completely yielded to Love
Like newborn babies crave all things
From your Father (who’s not just “above”)

The good news Jesus brought us
The Kingdom has come quite near
And as we live accordingly
We establish it as Here.

Empowered by the Spirit
Sent to us by the Son
We’ve tasted that the Lord is good
And He has made us One.

Posted in Different Scriptures, Spoken Word

1 Peter 1:13-16

Therefore prepare your minds for action
Distractions that focus on satisfaction
Last for a moment and are gone
This is a song you were born to sing
So bring your whole self to the table
Everything you’re able to give
All with which you live

(And if you find yourself unable
Because you’ve already set the table
With a loss of self control
Sin has taken its toll
And you feel it deep in your soul:
Scroll. Up.)

Your soul is receiving salvation
A station broadcasting new creation
Your signal is attuned to His
Set aside for the purposes of Love
This is Kingdom life
Inside – not trying to hide
But begging to be revealed
For through it, all is healed
Called to be Holy.

That doesn’t mean everything perfect is,
It simply means understanding
Everything is His.