Tuesday, April 15, 2008

promises for the Journey...

This week it was my turn to put Koinonia (our weekly community gathering for prayer) together. I threw a bit of Isaiah; quotes found in Chrysalis, a Nicholas Mynheer image and a youtube video together hopefully to communicate something of Faith Development - I guess you had to be there!!

When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you;
when you walk through fire you shall not be burned,
and the flame shall not consume you.

Isaiah 43:2

“The days are just beginning. Before you emerge into the light again you will be stripped to the core. You will rage and scream at God. You will retreat into a cocoon of sorrow and breathe in slow motion. The colour will drain from the sky, the meaning from life. As a plough tears through hard earth, your heart will be broken up. You will make friends with pain, nursing it as the child of grief utter emptiness fills the earth, and the valley appears to contain nothing but the echo of your own cry. Surely God has left you. The road which seemed to be leading somewhere has become a dead end. A mocking maze with no exit. Then one morning in the distant future, you wake and hear a bird singing ….”

Riddell, M. (2002:43). Godzone: A Guide for Travels of the Soul. Cleveland: Pilgrim Press.

Grace strikes us when we are in great pain and restlessness. It strikes us when we walk through the dark valley of a meaningless and empty life. It strikes us when our disgust for our own being, our indifference, our weakness, our hostility, and our lack of direction and composure has become intolerable to us. It strikes us when, year after year, the longed-far-protection of life does not appear, when the old compulsions reign within us as they have for decades sometimes at that moment a wave of light breaks into the darkness, and it is as though a voice were saying: 'You are accepted. You are accepted by that which is greater than you ... simply accept that you are accepted!

Paul Tillich Sermon 20 August 1948

I will give you the treasures of darkness
and riches hidden in secret places,
so that you may know that it is I, the Lord,
the God of Israel, who call you by your name.

Isaiah 45:3

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