Saturday, 12 January 2013

Passionate Spirituality 1?

John 02#01-11 Passionate Spirituality: Do we have it?

Water into Wine

What is this story really about?

Is Jesus involved in your celebrations?
Jesus went to family weddings. Free to celebrate.
Passionate Spirituality engages our emotions and our community. It is not often sombre and silent. It is being free to say “Wow! Look at that! Come over here! This is great!”. It is not always about suffering and loneliness. It is often about being with people you have a lot in common with. Like a family wedding, it is open to anyone and everyone. Everyone can dance – even Dad! Everyone can make a speech – even the Best Man. Everyone can dream – even the most unlikely girl can catch the bouquet. Not just for the Strictly expert; Stephen Fry; Miss World. Not just for the priest, the leader, the holy roller. Everyone. Jesus is part of all your celebrations in life.

Is Jesus involved in your urgent needs?
When is the right time? Open to advice (esp from Mum!)
Passionate Spirituality knows that everything is allowed – but that there is a right time for everything. And it waits sometimes. We may want to go on the Quiet Day, the Cursillo, the Soul Survivor holiday...but if we can't its not the end of the world. But there is a longing to reach out to God at any time and place. You can pray any time and anywhere. I speculate that Jesus had got used to the idea that “the time is not right”. We all do that. “When I retire”, “When I have a bit of spare cash”, “One day”. Sometimes we get so used to waiting that we forget to notice when the time is right. You've been saving for a rainy day? Look! It's raining! Passionate Spirituality turns like a child and says “Help!” when the need arises.
And if someone else's heart is longing to reach out to God, then sometimes all it takes is for you to say “Go on then. What are you waiting for?”.Don't forget that you can be Mary to someone else too. “Go for it!”- “Shall we pray together?” Jesus is involved in your urgent needs?

Is Jesus involved in your response of faith?
Redirecting the Traffic: ceremonial washing to carriers of joy.
Passionate Spirituality makes you see things differently. It is not limited by habits, traditions, other people's expectations. Jesus looked around and saw something that was too big. They were designed for religious purposes. To cleanse the diner of the uncleannesses of the day so that they could celebrate. It was a tradition. It had a religious purpose. Jesus redirected it. It was not now about being clean – it was about being able to receive what He was offering. Could they be dedicated to His purposes? Could they respond in faith?
Passionate Spirituality is about having a heart that is longing to reach out to God. Wanting to please Him above all else. It's no so important what you are like, what your gifts and abilities are, what your training or experience is, what your preferences and peculiarities are – or even what your weaknesses and sins are. The question is. Can you fully respond? Can you be filled to the brim? Do you have the potential to give Him everything you have? You may feel weak and inappropriate – like water at a feast; but will you let Him decide? Or do you have to stay in control of the situation? Will it be a response of faith or safety?
“If I did that I'd look a complete Berk!” - But if you don't then you, and those around you to whom Jesus wants to bring joy, will remain empty and thirsty. This was the first miraculous sign – and his disciples put their faith in Him – they were filled too. Their water became wine too. It was the best.

Passionate? Are you slightly outrageous?
Too much water! Too much wine! Outrageous! Passionate!
That's the quality of passion. It's out of proportion. It's unreasonable. It's all consuming. You can get carried away. Like the water in the jars. Carried away – and changed. Carried away – and helping to achieve Jesus' purpose.
Get Carried away – and you may become a sign, like the first sign, revealing Jesus for all time. So they will see it and believe in Him.
Passionate Spirituality is at the heart of a healthy, growing church.
Do we have it.?
Well we have the jars. We have the water. We have the potential.
What are we to do? What are you going to do?

“Do whatever He tells you”.

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