God's Love and Meditation
“Love is not only something you feel, it is something you do.”
--David Wilkerson, American Evangelist
“The first duty of love is to listen.”
-- Paul Tillich, Theologian
Love..... there’s that word again. If ever a word was trivialized and made to be stripped of its profound meaning, it’s Love. You know in everyday life how we cheapen it by applying it to “things:” I just love Taco Tuesday..... don’t you love how your Subaru drives in the snow..... my kid loves sledding...
Church Services on Sunday
Sunday services are presented online via Zoom on Sundays at 10 a.m. To join, open this link.
You may also view our services on our Facebook Channel. The livestream will begin at 10 a.m. Replays will be available immediately following the service. Go to www.FaceBook.com/DanburyChurch/Videos.
But let me ask you this: If someone walks up to you and tells you, “God loves you,” what inner dialog starts going on inside of you? Deep down, do you instantly put your defenses up and silently think, “How can that be? How can God love me when God knows all the things I’ve done, or the thoughts I have. Yeah.... I’m not worthy... not buying the idea that God loves me. That’s just a saying.”
The truth is, it’s not just a saying. It’s real.
The Essence of God
This weekend we’ll be reading from a portion of the scripture we’re not familiar with: the letters attributed by some scholars to John, the elder Evangelist. These were written after his Gospel and the Book of Revelation. He wrote these letters for those who were dealing with the turmoil of the late first century, when all sorts of tales about others who claimed to be the Messiah were circulating. So in these letters John made the essence of God as clear as possible for these early Christians. He told them about God's loving nature, that Love is not merely an attribute of God, it is part of his very makeup. God is not merely loving; at his core, God IS LOVE. God alone loves in the completeness and perfection of love.
And when we understand the “vertical” nature of God loving the humans beneath him, we have to also understand the “horizontal” nature of love. You cannot truly love -- and be loved -- by God without loving your brothers and sisters as well. When we think about it, love forms a perfect cross.
Mindfulness Meditation and the Flow of God's Love
What do we do with all this information, all this “loving?” We give ourselves as Christians a chance to actually experience the flow of God’s love through Mindfulness Meditation. Reverend Frank Basler will join me Sunday to talk a bit about what Mindfulness means, and lead us briefly in a meditation so that we may “try it out.”
Meditation has been a part of Christianity since the Garden of Gethsemane –- an important tool for reaching out to God, especially in times of stress. Some years ago while in a conference in Manhattan, I woke early to find a quiet place to meditate. When I walked into the room, there was a man already there, meditating -- Jon Kabat-Zinn, one of the most influential proponents of Mindfulness Meditation. He is credited with saying the following about anxiety and stress: “You can't stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.” I felt privileged to share the space with him. So join Reverend Frank and me on Sunday to test the waters of mindfulness, where we turn our love into listening.