Friday, 2 December 2016

Getting Lost

Another one from Barbara Brown Taylor's An Altar in the World is 'the practice of getting lost', otherwise known as 'wilderness'. The wilderness often seems to be a place to be avoided, and yet it seems pretty clear that those who don't cross the wilderness (which means going through it) will miss out on some pretty good stuff. I love this comment - "I have decided to stop fighting the prospect of getting lost and engage it as a spiritual practice instead.  The Bible is a great help to me in this practice, since it reminds me that God does some of God's best work with people who are truly, seriously lost."

God indeed deals in lost people, and we miss out on so much if we run away from the difficult things. Getting lost is a strong and frequent Biblical theme and something that plays a useful and relevant role in life. "Follow the story with an eye for getting lost and see how the theme sustains the plot.  The prophet Elijah gets lost in the desert while fleeing the fury of a queen named Jezebel, which is how he comes to hear the voice of God in the sound of sheer silence.  The people spend decades in exile in Babylon - a cultural wilderness they might never have survived without their practice in the literal wilderness of Sinai.  Much later, Jesus of Nazareth consents to becoming lost, to spending forty days in the Judean desert being tested by everything from wild animals to a scripture-quoting Satan."

We shouldn't worry if we feel lost. We just need to remember that someone is looking for us.

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