Caution vs. Love

C.S. Lewis on being careful rather than loving.

“Of all arguments against love none makes so strong an appeal to my nature as ‘Careful! This might lead you to suffering.’

… When I respond to that appeal I seem to myself to be a thousand miles away from Christ. If I am sure of anything I am sure that His teaching was never meant to confirm my congenital preference for safe investments and limited liabilities.…

There is no safe investment. To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly be broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket—safe, dark, motionless, airless—it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. The alternative to tragedy, or at least to the risk of tragedy, is damnation.

The only place outside Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from all the dangers and perturbations of love is Hell.” 

CS Lewis The Four Loves

Multiplication by Addition

I added a few things to my schedule last week.  I added a corporate prayer time at church once a month and Small Group once a week.

Like everyone else’s, my schedule is such that adding anything requires that I take something away.  In each instance I felt a pang of regret to lose the time I had given to other things in order to add these to my schedule.  Yet after each, I was so glad I did. 

There is an interesting life giving dynamic to corporate prayer and fellowship.  I can’t think of a time when no matter how tired I felt at the beginning of corporate prayer, that I didn’t leave that time energized and encouraged.  Similarly, spending time with a Small Group in a corporate sharing of what Jesus is doing in each of our lives, gives me a broader and deeper perspective on the loving actions of God that energizes and encourages me.  The blessings I receive from making time for corporate prayer and Small Group far outweigh the sacrifices I make to add them. 

I am thankful that even though I can forget how good these are, being a part of our church keeps me involved in things that multiply the blessings of God in my life. 

You’re Doing What?

I wonder how many times the disciples were asked that question as they told their friends where Jesus was taking them.  I wonder how many times they asked that question among themselves when Jesus was vague about their destination. I wonder how many times each disciple thought to himself; “What am I doing?” as he followed Jesus. 

I hope it was a lot because I certainly ask those questions a lot, and the implications of my journey with Jesus has not been nearly as risky as the followers of Jesus in the New Testament.  The experiences of the New Testament followers of Jesus were adventuresome to say the least.  Mine are once again taking that form.

A lot has happened in the 5 years since I became the Sr. Pastor of a church.  Much of it has been turbulent. Yet, through all the turmoil Jesus, the builder of the Church, has been putting together an unlikely band of surprisingly adventuresome people and He is leading us deeper into the adventure of following Him. 

The Bible shows us is that when a group of people join the adventure of following Jesus at least three things happen.

  1. They gain a deeper and more personal relationship with God because getting in over their heads makes them more dependent on God, more focused on God, and therefore more aware of the personal presence of God.

  2. They experience the joy that comes from being personally involved in the things that God says are most important.

  3. They grow closer together because in looking to what is bigger than all of them, they look past the things that divide them. 

As C.S. Lewis wrote in The Four Loves:

“Friendship must be about something… Those who have nothing can share nothing, those who are going nowhere can have no fellow travelers. 

It is my hope that this blog will serve as a travel log where we can record and remember our experiences as fellow travelers on the adventure that God has set before us.