Monday, December 6, 2010

From Spectators to Participants

Lots of folks
from Christ-followers
to seekers
to skeptics
ask me from time to time
"How can I encounter God?"
"How can I see God?"
"How can I experience God?"
I have a simple answer for that:
become a participant not a spectator.

It seems to me we
including myself
spend a lot of time
being spectators:
watching TV
checking Facebook
checking Twitter

Many folks who go to church
go expecting to be spectators
rather than participants.
"Hope the choir is on key today."
"Hope the preacher is interesting."
"Hope the sermon is short."

And we go home wondering
where is God?

No wonder.
Faith is not a spectator sport.
It demands participation
if we are going to encounter God.
That means
getting out there
feeding the hungry
visiting the prisoner
holding the hand of the lonely and forgotten
weeping with those in grief
speaking to the powers that perpetuate injustice
making room in our lives for someone else.

My colleague, Jeanne Wisenbaugh
preached on Mary, the mother of Jesus, yesterday
and something she said got my mind going.
And what came out was something like this
Mary wasn't going to be a spectator
in God's divine drama
if God was going to invite her to be a participant.
She said, "Yes."
"If that's what you want, God, I'm all in."

I believe that God invites everyone to be a participant
in the divine drama
of human history.
And the one's who see God
are the one's
who say

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