Today I am wondering...
- What can we do - individually and collectively - to ensure that the New Church of Boston is healthy and helpful?
- What can we do to promote the blessings we offer?
- How can we strengthen ourselves - personally and organizationally - to serve better?
Here is one point to ponder:
Let's reconnect with the Lord.
Simple to say. How do we do it?
Reconnecting with the Lord is the core of "religion." That word is based on the healing act of repairing ligaments in the body. Years ago I tore my ACL. My knee was unstable and prone to more damage. Some of the muscles in my leg became weak. I became less active.
What a relief when I had the ligament surgically replaced and the joint restored. With regular exercise, the strength in my leg returned, and I got back into my normal activities.
There are many ligaments in the body - probably hundreds or even thousands - of various sizes and shapes. Normally we don't think about them. They just do their thing providing the multitude of connections necessary for our bodily health. Occasionally we notice when one gets bruised or we experience inflammation, and then we need to go into damage control.
Similarly, there are many spiritual ligaments the Lord has given us to keep the various parts of our lives connected and functional. They come in different forms depending on our needs. A few common ones are reading the Word, prayer, meditation, conscience, spiritual practices, altruistic acts of good will and charity, doing one's work justly, faithfully, and sincerely, showing compassion, maintaining good relationships with loved ones and with the neighbor in general, working on our spiritual growth, and working to strengthen the church in this world, etc.
However, by our mortal nature, such spiritual ligaments are prone to weakness, tears, and breaks, which in turn lead to significant troubled interruptions. It takes careful diagnosis, study, and determination to understand these impairments and how they are debilitating. And it takes initiative and skill to work on repairing them. Even the words "impair" and "repair" imply disconnecting and reconnecting.
'Re-ligamenting" with God - reconnecting - is the purpose of religion. And it is a two-way, collaborative healing procedure. As the patient, I need to be willing and interested enough to realize the trouble I'm in and take measures to prepare for the treatment. When I schedule time and energy to submit myself to the Lord's spiritual renewal, then I can experience the joy of restoring and strengthening my relationship with Him.
When I "religion" with the Lord in any way, I open an opportunity to exercise my spiritual connections, make good use of the noble qualities from the Lord in me, and be of more service to others.
Practically speaking, this happens for me in private meditation, corporate worship, small groups, and by implementing tasks or spiritual practices in daily activities.
Organizationally, don't we all want the New Church of Boston - including our connections with others throughout New England - to be healthy and helpful?
In this context, isn't it important for us to work diligently and regularly on connecting with the Lord and with each other? How can we make this happen?
I am very interested in your thoughts about this!
The past two-and-a-half years have been challenging. The world has changed in some ways. We need to adjust and move forward. What can we do to strengthen our strengths and overcome our weaknesses? What do you think? What can we implement soon, and what can we plan to implement later?
Let's start some conversations. I believe the Lord will bless our efforts. Are you available to talk? Let's keep reconnecting.
With love and respect, Nathan