Thursday, October 26, 2006

Grace

So.

The thought/message that came to me in MFW this week (it didn't rise to vocal ministry, but it had that SMACK-into-the-baseball-glove feeling of a message at the time) came up something like this.

As I was centering into worship, one of our members, a mom whose warmth and integrity I really admire, came into the meeting room. As she crossed to her bench, I noticed how lovely she was--regal, almost. And I felt a sudden fierce tenderness toward her (if that makes sense) that made me so glad: glad she was there, glad I was, glad she is a kind and caring human... I don't know. Just... glad.

And it came to me that, when I look at _you_ and I see God, that is grace.

When I look at you and see God.
That is grace.

(Pagans distressed by my terminology, see the comment below.)

3 comments:

Cat Chapin-Bishop said...

I know Pagans who say that the concept of Grace is not a Pagan one. But, though the way I'm using it has a Christian resonance, may I point out that Pagans (of the Hellenic variety) pioneered the concept of grace, via the Graces, before Abraham ever had that little conversation with his God about Isaac?

And the "G" word. Hey, it bothers me, too, where it's being used in a nicely exclusionary way: "one nation under God" so clearly was written to tell me that _my_ Gods don't count.

That's not how I'm using it here. I could have written it "Spirit" or "Goddess" I guess. But that's not how the message came to me. I don't know what the word "God" means here. I don't know what that word means in a lot of contexts, actually. And maybe it's _because_ of the ambiguity that I feel the need to use the word here: not "Inner Light" or "Goddess within" or any of the other correct-sounding terminology. It seems to me that those words are, in their own way, as exclusionary and prescriptive as the "G" word itself can be.

Also, that's just not how the message came to me. So, offensive or not, I'm going to share the words I understood at the time... even at the risk of being _mis_understood by at least some members of our studio audience.

Thus endeth the footnote...

Plain Foolish said...

Thank you. This post (and the comment) speaks to my condition. I've been discovering that much of my spirituality lies off the beaten track, and this spoke powerfully to me. Thank you. I am adding you to my links.

Erik Dutton said...

This pagan understood your message perfectly. I've been meaning to post for a while just to say thank you for this blog - along with a handful of others (Bjorngrimmr, Hrafnkell, Jason Pitzl-Waters, Arachne), you give me hope that the pagan movement is actually developing the depth needed to grow and endure.

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