The concert pianist was quite jolly in his pre-concert gloss on the pieces to be performed. I noticed by the frowns that there were some stuffy people present who took a dim view of his attitude.
Those who find security in conformity will often take offence at child-like playfulness and irreverent fun. Admonitions to ‘grow up’ can come from mature people already dead in spirit or from younger folks with an already shrunken sense of being. Their cries of ‘They have no shame!’ are an indication of the degree of inhibition in which they live.
Sadly some of these people can become pastors or leaders whose breath withers spirit and life from those who might have had promise if not for their influence. There are few people of real uniqueness and individually about, few who are truly who they are. So many humans live as mendicants attempting to suck life from that which is not human.
If you are attempting to draw life from Christianity you are an example of what I mean. So are we all when we are simply a living construct of the church. But not if Christ is our life. Not when we are the expression of the being of the Son of Man. Don’t expect to be spirit and life to anyone if all you are is a construct of religion and the church. But if you and Father are one, expect to be the manifestation of His Son!
I purchased a new smartphone recently. One of the pleasures it affords it the ability to take excellent photos and store them in the cloud where they can quickly be accessed to go in your Day One diary or be shared with others on Facebook. While FB can be a trivial pursuit it can also be used to declare the gospel of the Kingdom. Social Media can be the evasion of the ploys of the kind of Gate-Keeper whose vested interest is conformity and control. Then again it can support mind-numbing conformity and intelligence sapping homogeneity - like the notion that opposition to homosexuality is a phobia and a kind of irrational mental illness. This attitude itself is itself phobic and anti-rational. Nevertheless it succeeds in bullying many into taking a back-seat and remaining silent in the face of an enlarging perversion.
I have offered before that I believe there is much opportunity to be had in the mind of Christ - but little from the mind of the conservative. Unless one can separate one’s thinking from the status quo we are unable to view situations with sufficient distance and perspective to offer a useful critique of the way things are.
Acquiescence to ‘what is’ belongs to the horse and the ox but not to human beings. Sadly ‘the way things are’ can vary from best practice to ingrained ineffectiveness and stupidity. It’s useful to note that those who were chosen as the first deacons in the new testament church were people of wisdom and the Holy Spirit. They were not flaky folks who spoke in tongues. (Tongues in themselves are not flaky, but some of those who speak in them are). They were people of sound mind and sharp intellect who moved in the wisdom and revelation of the indwelling Christ. In Christ we gain the ability to retain that which is of value and abandon that which is manifest folly.
Each and every one of us has the capacity and potential to be who we were created to be in our full uniqueness if we are prepared to be ourselves in Christ, to receive Christ as our life and live from His person instead of the assumptions of the herd. There is no replacement in your life for a personal Jesus because there is really no replacement in the world of action of a genuinely authentic you.
On my walk last Saturday I took out my phone and snapped a scene that had caught my eye the day before. I posted it on Facebook with these words: ‘This front garden rejoiced as itself as I went by on my morning walk.’ But I wondered how many realized what a parable of Kingdom life this was. This garden, in all its colour and glory was simply being itself, without effort or strain. It simply rejoiced to the world as itself and in doings so gave joy to all who saw and pondered and glory to God. It’s glory is itself.
You too have a glory that comes not from what you wear of what you possess but from who you are. Adam led us all in a false and debilitating attempt ‘to be.’ He made us sons of a lie because we had entered the illusions of the Father of lies. But we have one Father who is God. In this Father we are truly son and daughters. In Him we are nurtured in the spirit of Sonship to be our real selves instead of flitting as shadows of our real identity. The reality is Christ and in Him we are real.
Jesus ended Adam. He put Adam’s lies, Adam’s culture and Adam’s degradation to death at the cross. In exchange He gave us Himself. This was God giving us Himself, giving back the fatherhood we had lost at the fall through our immaturity and the trickery of Satan. This had been the plan from before the foundation of the earth. The plan was for Christ to be our life, for Christ the third person of the trinity to be a human being and for Christ to dwell by the Spirit in each of us to imbue us with His qualities and the life of the trinity.
Thus in a manner of speaking we are like the garden in the picture. Liberated from religion and from the many artifices of the world; set free from law and legalism and pedantic rites and observances we have become the expression of Christ who lives in us and expresses Sonship through us each in the fullness of our unique identity and joy of being. In Christ we are both graced and imbued with God and our true selves. We are at rest in Christ. We have a perpetual Sabbath life in Him. We are continually refreshed and regenerated by His person and we are in God. We are in the Father where we are authenticated and nurtured as the sons we are. The result is that we give glory to God by rejoicing as ourselves and in so doing live as the new creation and bear much fruit.