Us & Them: Isolation
Friday already? It sure is. We’ve not only reached the day when we can again see green grass, but we’re deep into the heart of our “Us & Them” sermon series, which contains unique elements on each theme every Sunday and Wednesday. What I’ve come to appreciate is the way this series gives us a fresh, even if sometimes unnerving, opportunity to examine the “stories” that govern our worldview or outlook on life. It gives us an awareness that could lead us to change it, if willing.
When Jesus spoke of the coming of the Reign of God, he was trying to change others' foundational worldview and the “metanarrative” that often unconsciously governs their decisions and values. Richard Rohr once put it this way: "It is surely important to become conscious of such a primary lens or we will never know what we don’t see and why we see other things out of all perspective.”*
Yet this is the key. Rohr adds: “Our operative worldview is formed by three images that are inside every one of us. They are not something from outside; they have already taken shape within us. All we can do is become aware of them, which is to awaken them. The three images to be awakened and transformed are our image of self, our image of God, and our image of the world. A true hearing of the Gospel transforms those images into a very exciting and, I believe, truthful worldview.”*
In that light, l am keenly aware (again) that I have some real, intentional, internal work to do if I am to truly be able to “awaken” and grow in this ability. What practices have you been able to put in your life which have allowed or enabled you to do so? I would love to hear from you – and learn from you – as we continue this Lenten journey together.
Meanwhile, please consider joining Pastor Katie and our women tonight at their (virtual) Annual Women’s Gathering, featuring great speakers, worship, and other elements. It’s free – yet requires you register in advance on our website. Do so if you haven’t already. I remind you, too, to plan on participating in our brief service of Holden Evening Prayer next Wednesday at 6:30. If your schedule allows, this year’s “Lutheran Day on the Hill” is offered virtually this Thursday from 9:30-11:30 and offering some timely insight into the issues that impact the most vulnerable in our state. Register in advance at “LSIowa.org.” Hope to “see” you there!
Let’s keep writing our “Seventh Story” together! I look forward to the opportunity.
*Adapted from Richard Rohr, The Wisdom Pattern: Order, Disorder, Reorder (Franciscan Media: 2001, 2020), 135–138.