Monday, March 7, 2011

Become Yourself

A friend and I were talking about the church and wondering how we can tell which churches are going to survive and which ones aren’t.  Surely God can’t be counting on financial means alone to determine who thrives and who doesn’t.  Surely the Spirit has more than one way and many ways to move amongst us.  Then I was reminded of something Peter Short said to us at the Sowing Seeds, Growing Leaders event last October.  He said that our job as leaders was to become ourselves.  Become your authentic self, the self that God created you to be.  Maybe that is the clue for our communities as well.  Maybe the ones most likely to survive are the ones who are working on becoming themselves, becoming the authentic community that can live out of and into God’s plan. 
That then begs the question, how do we collectively discover and become our authentic selves?  I think that participating in spiritual practice is one way to discover our authentic selves.   I wonder if the Christian tradition of Lenten practice, the three traditional practices of prayer, fasting and almsgiving might be of help if we practice them collectively and intentionally.  We are good at collective almsgiving and prayer, but what about fasting?  What would happen if we together, as a community fasted from that which keeps us from being who we are called to be?  We might fast from yearning for more people in the pews.  We might fast from talking about finances before we talk about ministry at our meetings.  I belonged to a community once who fasted from their Council meetings during Lent and instead met for prayer.  Google Dirty sexy ministry for other great ideas (this is a bonafide, witty website offered by two, albeit unorthodox, female priest- I promise).
Think about gathering your community together in a collective fast this Lent. In the Holy space that is created, find out more about who you are and God’s intention for you.  In this sacred space and time, move toward the Holy, move toward authenticity, become yourselves.   God be with you.

Lori Megley-Best

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for this Lori. Guessing that not all of the KOP ministry personnel are checking in to this blog, I am cutting and pasting it into an email for them to consider. I love the idea of fasting from meetings to gather instead, in prayer. Considering the number of church meetings and the number of people at each one ... talk about some serious prayer time!! Just think of the possibilities!!