Monday, July 09, 2007

Divine Hypertension

Went to FGC Gathering last week as a daily commuter since it was ridiculously close.

I talked to others from my meetings about how we used Gatherings of Northern Yearly meeting and Friends General Conference to connect more deeply with people from our own meeting.

I had the opportunity to sit and have lengthy discussions with several people from Twin Cities Friends Meeting, where I have been a regular attender for three years. We realized that in our regular lives (with children running around, or the need to dash off to work) we hadn't been able to connect in this way.

In meeting this Sunday, reflecting on the gift of spending a week with time slowed from its usual pace I got an image of us as the cells that make up the divine body.

That we are meant to come together and interact in the way we could and did at FGC. NOT in the way our real lives demand. That we are meant to function in coordination with one another.

How much can a single cell accomplish? What does one cell know of the will of the divine? It's why we must come together. The communal nature of worship and of action...

The cellular model made me think of all the racing around we do giving the divine a case of high blood pressure. And we all know that stress can lead to many different maladies.

And we cannot expect divine intervention if health is not restored.



Blogger Liz Opp said...

Hi, Kiara--

You are asking good and important questions here, about the connection between the individual and the faith community; about the craziness of our daily lives and its impact on our ability to spend quality time with others in our meetings.

I also find it intriguing that you write: ...we are meant to come together and interact in the way we could and did at FGC. NOT in the way our real lives demand.

Who says that our DAILY lives are our REAL lives? Maybe our current daily lives aren't what we're supposed to be living...

I personally think many modern Friends have slipped into that very thinking, though, and that what we need to do is exercise the muscles (intellectual, spiritual, and others) that would say that the life of the meeting community is our real lives, our daily lives.

I have been finding that if I keep God and my faith community central in my life--and if my partner is willing to do the same--then the distinction between the time I have during Friendly events and the time I have away from them are much more like one another. And it is easier to "stay in the Life" rather than compartmentalize it.

Then again, do our meetings have regular childcare available for young families? Do we provide intergenerational activities so we don't have to choose between spending time with our blood-family's loved ones or spending time with our faith-family's loved ones?

Difficult to do but possible, at least (at first) on a small scale.

I'm glad you found Gathering and NYM sessions to be a fruitful time, nevertheless, and I'm sorry I didn't see you in River Falls!

Liz Opp, The Good Raised Up

4:30 PM  

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