2.0 // a RULE of Life
Here is that post i wrote a awhile back. Probably should probably post it, finally!And a good thing for me to think about / remember as well!
======= a RULE of Life...
There is a tension. A tension that exists between living free and living bound by rules and law.
I think this tension has been created by humans who misuse law and misplace rules in the lives of people or themselves. Specifically i’m talking about the Church, those who claim to be communities and individuals who follow Christ. Something has gone wrong.
You’ve gotta think that if God gave us rules to live by that God believed there was some good that could come from this method of living and discipleship. If living by the rules was a bad things God wouldn’t have ever given us rules to live by! The ten commandments were a rule of life, a way to live, a guide for communities. Obviously God had hoped for something else in the garden but that didn’t exactly work out, thanks to us. And there is a lot we could say about rules and commandments and Jesus entering the picture but read Matthew 5:17-48 carefully, Jesus was getting hardcore about the “rules” - the way of life he was praying his people would live.
The people of God have messed this up for thousands of years! Right. We have taken the rule of life God, in his grace, gave us and made it a law with lots of i and t to be dotted and crossed. We’ve made it about achieving and earning despite God loving us recklessly and extravagantly from the beginning and clearly in the person of Jesus Christ.
But because of our track record we are scared of rules and law. And what is a “rule of life” anyway. If your like me you’ve either never heard of this phrase or it’s really new to you.
This conversation is happening in my life because i recently started reading a book, at the recommendation of my spiritual director, by Father Timothy Gallagher on Saint Ignatius of Loyola. St. Ignatius is credited as being sort of the father of spiritual direction and is well know for his “Rules for discerning the spirit” among other things. In the book i’m reading Father Gallagher is offering explanation on these rules and encouraging readers to incorporate them into daily spiritual life.
I like the idea of being free and have never really been a rule follower, to say it mildly. But as i grow and as i continue to follow Jesus i realize how much i need a guide for living as a faithful follower of Jesus. I can’t do it on my own and just maybe, through grace and a good (God given) community, a rule of life—structure and discipline will be the very things that set me free to follow Jesus in the ways i have always praying i would.
Again, i know we are scared of “law” and just more rules rather than relationship but that IS NOT what this is about. This is about discipline and order, it’s about a structure that a strong house of faith can be built on. This is about embracing fully your relationship with Jesus by being intentional and faithful.
My hope is that as we approach the season of Lent we will begin to think about these kinds of things and how they may help us to truly be free to love and serve the risen Lord, who first wondered in the desert, who woke up to pray EVERY morning... the one who carried a cross, and was crucified, dead and buried!
I pray this conversation would help us to share in his suffering, so that we might somehow attain to his resurrection!
Grace and peace erik