Thursday, August 11, 2011
The JOY?! of sharing in Christ's suffering . . .
As I am forced to lie low with a cold, I have time more time for prayer . . . the deep, Spirit-led kind. God reminds me that when I surrendered my life to His Son, He (The Father) sent the Holy Spirit (as promised) to teach and guide me. This is one of the profound mysteries of the Holy Trinity working (dancing) in unity as a beautiful relationship to grow us and at the same time renew the Kingdom ("make all things new"). I don't begin to feign understanding of this mystery, but sometimes the Spirit reveals things to me ("openings" as George Fox called them.) Today, I marvel at how the Holy Spirit enables us to pray out of compassion and with "suffering" for others and Creation. Filled with the Spirit and the compassion of Christ, we enter into the "groans" of Creations itself for the land and people; in poverty, in starvation, in death and dying, in tyranny and so much more that is a sign of brokenness in this world. We partner intimately with the Holy Trinity, Father, Son & Spirit in prayers that emanate from our guts . . . no words, just groans from deep inside. It is a most blessed "calling", this prayer. But God does not leave us there, He prompts us to do practical things; whether donations to causes or direct labor in the Kingdom . . . and of course, He takes our small (and seemingly insignificant) offerings and magnifies them for His Glory and the welfare of His Kingdom, which is here now, and yet also coming. This is life, to be yoked with Christ and share in His sufferings . . . there is an indescribable JOY in this that the "world" cannot understand or fathom in the least, but it is JOY unsurpassed, even heavenly. Out of darkness into Light, come Lord Jesus.