Monday, November 20, 2006

It's backwards

As he speaks about transformation, John Ortberg says:

When morphing happens, I don't just do the things Jesus would have done; I find myself wanting to do them. They appeal to me. They make sense. I don't just go around trying to do them; I become the right sort of person.
I'm wondering this evening what that would look like.

After class last week, and thinking about the Beatitudes as being "backwards" from what we would logically except from life, I think that living as a "morphed" person, would be to experience life backwards from what we would expect.
  • A friend sent me a quote today by Saint Teresa of Avila -- "Our body has this defect that, the more it is provided care and comforts, the more needs and desires it finds." A life lived as Jesus would have lived would turn this quote backwards to read, "On body is designed such that the more care and comforts it is provided, the more we want to care and comfort other people."
  • I wrote yesterday about forgiveness, and the idea that the grace of the act is felt most often by the one forgiving -- sometimes not even noticed by the forgiven. Unlike what society says, the forgiven doesn't need to earn the act.
  • Serve a meal, make a donation, read to a child -- who is blessed? Certainly the one who receives the grace of the action, but just as much the one who acts for God. Do God's work, and know this to be true.
  • When we share gratitude, the receiver of the thank you is blessed. More than that, though, being gracious and full of thanksgiving is transforming -- it makes us realize how much we have to be thankful for.
  • Write a note to someone, pointing out God's work in his/her life, and learn how to recognize God walking among us.

It's all backwards. Our expectations -- at least those based in what society thinks -- are turned upside down when we morph. We learn to give grace, and we find that the more we give it away, the more we experience it. It's illogical. It's backwards.



Blogger Linda said...

As I was growing up, I heard on more than one occasion that I would always be "backward" because I was an only child....I never appreciated that adjective until now :) Thanks!

9:51 PM  

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