“A thick and shapeless tree trunk would never believe that it could become a statue, admired as a miracle of sculptor, and would never submit itself to the chisel of the sculptor, who sees by her genius what she can make of it.” ~ Ignatius, from SacredGateway.
There’s so much to be “shaped”, some stuff needing to be chopped off, other areas just some refinement, a little artistic touch here and there, alll under the loving strokes of the heavenly chisel artist. At times, it’s scary because one doesn’t really know what’s going on (usually we’ll find out in hindsight).
After last night’s 4th anniversary dinner, with much focus on us as a church (a people gathered ultimately by the Spirit) and celebrating the milestones we’ve walked through, it’s actually a very personal journey as well for each and everyone of us. For me, there have been many surprises of joy indeed, and there have been much sorrow and pain. Often, things didn’t work out as I imagined, at other times, waves of challenges just come again and again personally and painfully especially when it involves people close to us. And then when you least expect it, God pops up with gifts beyond our planning or comprehension. His no.1 love is his creation and he’s the one who builds the church … he’s the one who’s “re-making us!”
As I meditate on these words this morning …“It is not for you to know the times or periods that the Father has set by his own authority” (From Acts 1) I realize like the early disciples we can be impatient with the Father and insist (even though in a cunning way) that “let’s get all this over with!” (often based on terms set my our own agenda) but Jesus is clearly saying we focus on what’s on earth and what’s within our authority and responsibility (while keeping our future hope in mind). It’s not that understanding the “times” & “periods” are unimportant … I suppose, the Spirit will guide us into all truth! It’s more of not getting preoccupied with that speculative exercise and not get on with what’s really important … being WITNESSES of Jesus. And for that we need Spirit-Power … his “re-shaping” is crucial, and the Holy Spirit comes indeed. have your own way, Lord!