Friday, January 2, 2009

Relating brings us into Reality

"Our relatedness brings us into reality, provided we are open to it. For instance, we prefer to avoid those people who annoy us, upset us, rub us the wrong way, push our buttons. Yet these are precisely the people who can help us to grow. Our reaction to them exposes the egoism we try to hide, the fear we suppress, the spite we pretend isn't there. Let's ask ourselves, 'Who is the person I most hate to be around?' We need that very person in order to be real.

Relationships show us what's truly happening in our life, if we have the courage to face it. They reveal this separate, unreal self of ours who wants to isolate us from the rest of the human race.... If we come to church on Sunday with the notion, 'I'm here to be alone with God, I'm here to do my private devotion,' we're living in a dream world. There is no such thing as a solitary Christian.
Terrence Grant: The Silence of Unknowing

Well now, doesn't THAT put a new spin on "personal relationship with Jesus Christ?"

7 comments:

Jayne said...

Indeed it does, and I had a person in mind the entire time I read it.... whew. Food for thought.

becky said...

I shall remember that when I go back to work on Monday and work with one particular woman who drives me around the bend. Actually I am going to invite her to lunch.

Juliann in WA said...

That is a question to ponder. Thanks

mrs. d. said...

Sorry. I don't want that badly to grow anymore.

blessings on your day!

Brad said...

Roberta, happy Saturday. I really like this one too. It's all about stuff I've been dealing with for some time now. As you may have figured out from stuff I say, for me the whole deal about the incarnation and the inevitable death and resurrection has proved to be the best way for God to find me and for me to find myself. But I also believe God finds people in many ways, and for some cultures and times that way may look different or strange to me.

Still, at the heart of every true way is the stuff at the heart of Jesus' message - love God and love EVERYONE else. We talked about "speaking from the heart" at the Conversation Cafe yesterday and one guy really hit it - he said he finds that hard because it means really relating to someone else and that entails risk -risking yourself, tearing down
your walls, opening doors you can't close again. Right on! Jesus told his own to see him in every person they would encounter. It's amazing how trying to do that changes my reaction to folks I initially react negatively to!
Thank you! - Brad

Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

One thing about working at home is that I so rarely have to deal with this anymore . . . but there are still people who annoy me at church. I guess that's a good thing. :-)

A. S. said...

Wow. So true. You have lots of good things to share :)