Wednesday, February 25, 2009
For: The Institute of Contemporary And Emerging Worship Studies, St. Stephen's University, Essentials Red Online Worship History Course with Dan Wilt
Remembering is not one of my strong points, at least in certain areas. If I meet you for the first time, I will invariably ask you what your name is a few times before I get it. When we go to a movie, a week or two later I will not be able to tell you the main character's name. I am admittedly a person who lives most of her life in the here and now. While I see that as primarily a good thing, a fresh and engaging way to live my life, it does mean that I can miss out on important lessons and resources that are embedded in the past.
This week we started reading a book about the importance of forming spirituality by living the Christian year (Advent, Christmas, Epiphany, Lent, Easter, etc.) along with all its implications. Ritual has very little appeal to me, and I will usually look for a way to extract a modern and meaningful application from any liturgy or tradition. That's not a bad idea, but after reading a few chapters in this book (Ancient-Future Time by Robert E. Webber) I realised that no one has ever explained the profound reason and purpose behind all of these traditions.
Simply stated, remembering all of these events is a way to live our lives in the pattern of Christ. We suffer with Christ, we are crucified with Christ, we die with Christ, we are buried with Christ, we are raised with Christ, we live with Christ. It is turning our lives from one where we live our own way with our own patterns and behaviours to one that centres and takes its cues from the life of Christ. We proclaim his life and death not only in our words and worship, but in our seasons. Cool, huh?
I don't exactly know what the implications of this will be in my life. At the very least, I will think of Jesus and his life more often as the calendar months flip by. Hopefully, some of what I am learning and thinking about will also show up in a meaningful way to enrich our faith community. Above all, let us be a people who reflect the entire life of Jesus in every part of our living. Let the place where this eternal life of God touches our history become a place where we can touch the eternal.
This is Jazz watching some of this week's video teaching for Essentials Red. Honestly, she really does this all on her own, this is not a set-up shot.