The Inspiring Nature of the Everyday

everyday lens

 

QUESTION

 

In what ways do you most naturally encounter God?

 

I grew up with a pretty narrow — and yet valuable — perspective on what it means to be “close to God.”  It is valuable to me still because it was a foundation for caring about God and seeking a life of awareness.  And yet, I look back and see more boundaries and narrowness than anything else.  God was to be found in the confines of Scripture only — and the way we engage God was in reading and study.

Let me first say – that I DO have a high value of the Story of God — it shapes what we can know of God, for sure!  However, unless we are bent toward a studiousness — we seem to have no hope of engaging God.  Words cannot be the ULTIMATE, right?  God is ultimate.  Not limited to words.  Not limited to our education.  Not limited even to literacy.  Well, I hope not.

So, with that said, combined with my own trek through a life of vocational ministry — that has become a life of DUAL vocations in Design and Pastoring.  I cannot limit God to just encountering Him in the narrow way of my childhood.  Namely, because life seems SO MUCH BIGGER.  And life is also so much more chaotic.  Do we only know and draw near to God through a 10 minute “quiet time” — or could their be more?

There is so much BEAUTY expressed all around us that opens us to God.

There are so many relationships that are built around the TABLE that reveal the nearness of God.

There are so many aspects of the city that open our eyes to God.

There are actions, rhythms, prayers, and words that make us aware to God.

The conversation we are engaged in within Convergence is one that is exploring our individual “lenses” or “bents” to experience God more broadly.  So we are simply asking,

In what ways do you most naturally encounter God?

I’ve arbitrarily made 4 areas that may help speak to our areas of natural connection with God.  They don’t define ever way — and you are not just one of these.  It’s on overlap — a “both/and” — so don’t get hung up on narrowly defining yourself or others.  This is meant to be a tool of grace and a tool of self-examination.

EVERYDAY-blog

A TOOL OF GRACE.

We have all gone through life feeling more near or more distant from God, right?  I think it probably has a bit of a connection to a narrow view of how we connect with God.  Do we feel closer when we “go to church”?  Do we feel closer when we enact a “quiet time”?  And what of those seasons of life where these things are truly difficult?  Is it your lack of commitment showing through?  Or is it simply a humanness — a realization that you cannot be everything and do everything?  Burnout comes to those who seek to be super-human.

Burnout is what happens when you try to avoid being human for too long. – M. Gungor, The Crowd, The Critic, and the Muse: A Book for Creators

More grace, i say.  We need more ways to see God and more affirmation to see God in our everyday.  This is grace.

 

A TOOL OF SELF-EXAMINATION

We must be people of examination.  The contemplative world understands this.  If we don’t know ourselves, we blindly go through life never growing.  We cannot be learners if we don’t know where we are.  We cannot see beyond ourselves if we don’t acknowledge our own limited lens.  We need to be aware.  We need to know our true and false self.  Examination is key.

 

Back to the question.

In what ways do you most naturally encounter God?

Take a look at these slideshows — they may be the first clue as to where you identify.

 

BEAUTY:  Do you see God in what these images represent?

• View our BEAUTY images

• Read more about BEAUTY here.

 

TABLE:  Do you see God in what these images represent?

• View our TABLE images

• Read more about TABLE here.

 

DEVOTION:  Do you see God in what these images represent?

• View our DEVOTION images

• Read more about DEVOTION here.

 

CITY:  Do you see God in what these images represent?

• View our CITY images

• Read more about CITY here.

 

 

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The Inspiring Nature of the Everyday

– by scott scrivner

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