Here is the first guide, covering Chapters 1 and 2. Additional guides will follow over the next few weeks.
“The art of being gentle – of kindness and forgiveness, sensitivity and thoughtfulness and generosity and humility and good old-fashioned love – have gone out of fashion. Ironically, everyone is demanding their “rights,” and this demand is so shrill that it destroys one of the most basic “rights,” if we can put it like that: the “right,” or at least the longing and hope, to have a peaceful, stable, secure, and caring place to live, to be, to learn, and to flourish. Once again people ask the question: Why is it like this? Does it have to be like this? Can things be put to rights and if so how?...we can say that the reason we have these dreams, the reason we have a sense of a memory of the echo of a voice, is that there is someone speaking to us, whispering in our inner ear – someone who cares very much about this present world and our present selves.” (page 8, 9)
SCRIPTURE – Matthew 5 NLT
“God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs. 4 God blesses those who mourn, for they will be comforted. 5 God blesses those who are humble, for they will inherit the whole earth. 6 God blesses those who hunger and thirst for justice for they will be satisfied. 7 God blesses those who are merciful, for they will be shown mercy.”
• Where does our sense of justice come from and how do my rights fit into God’s whispers for this reality?
• Where does the life of Jesus fit in with our sense of and the fulfillment of justice?
“’The hidden spring’ of spirituality is the second feature of human life which, I suggest, functions as the echo of a voice; as a signpost pointing away from the bleak landscape of modern secularism and toward the possibility that we humans are made for more than this.” (page 20)
SCRIPTURE – Matthew 10 NLT
28 Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”
• How does your spirituality tell you that you were made for more?
• Jesus promises rest for our souls. If you experience that on a normal basis, what is it that gets you there?
• How does or should Christian spirituality affect making things right in the world?