Hearing Soulful-Stories and Sacred Callings

Staff_Delony, Len

Monday morning many of the clergy at our church began the week with an important, even groundbreaking, day-retreat. (Heartfelt thanks to all of you in the Congregational Care Ministries team who have been keeping our clergy, and our whole church in prayer recently!)

With so many things to get done in a typical day, it seems that we can all get caught up in the rush to “use time well” and have no patience for what can seem, in the short run at least, like an utter waste of time. And how we “use” our time is measured primarily in “chronos” clock-time. Unfortunately, our sense of meaning and purpose are often lost in the blur of things that must be done now.

The callings and purpose of our lives, however, come from a different understanding of time. Throughout the ages, our faith tradition has proclaimed that we “live and move and have our being” from a different kind of time. “Kairos”, sometimes called “God’s time” is the time from which our sacred, soulful stories emerge… where the meaning, connections and callings come thru… and which I think, paradoxically, is always happening both “now, and forever,” in the same kairos moment.

But does our, highly sophisticated, yet very recent ability to measure chronos-clock-time help us be more aware of God’s kairos time? It seems a growing number of people are becoming aware that more often than not, it seems to hinder our awareness of God’s Presence and guidance of the Holy Spirit.

What is your own experience in your day-to-day life? What helps you connect with a deep sense of purpose and calling?

As I said above, I believe the retreat we were on to begin this week was important, even groundbreaking. We were able to listen to God, ourselves and one another in ways that seem almost impossible when we are slaves, shackled to clock-time. We must shape the rhythms of our days to make listening and working from “God’s time” a greater priority. I believe through our recent, groundbreaking retreat, we are being called to “design an architecture of how we are in time” so that we might all be set free to be more present to the Wisdom of God’s truly awesome Presence.

A particularly helpful “takeaway” from our retreat Monday, was a handout that distinguishes our “ego stories” from our “soul stories.” Click here to download a pdf of the handout, as you listen for and tell soulful stories, and honor sacred callings throughout our church and community.

Also, the 23rd Psalm is one of the most beautiful prayer-songs of our heritage. Click the play button below to hear our friend and brother in Christ at FUMC, Jeff Donahue. At Jim Jones’ memorial service at our church yesterday, we were blessed by his singing this for our whole community. (This recording is actually from a recording on Good Friday as people were walking the Labyrinth in Wesley Hall.)

Grace and peace to you all.

Len

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