From an article in Leadership:
“We want to make the spiritual practices gritty and normal, not just mystical.”
This from Doug Pagitt, pastor of Solomon’s Porch. Isn’t that what we do too often? Push the disciplines into that mystical haze along with Communion and “worship.” The simple fact of the matter, though, is that for our founder, Jesus, the disciplines were gritty and normal. He practiced them on the dusty roads of Judea, accompanied by a ragtag bunch of people who left home to follow him. He cried out in praise and worship, he prayed all night, he taught the Scriptures, but he connected all these things to the real world around. Jesus’ stories, for the most part, use everyday life to explain spiritual truth. And he’s incredibly practical as well, what some people like to call earthy. “Facing this? Here’s how you respond.”
I, on the other hand, like to confine religious activities to houses of worship; I pray in hushed tones, if at all; I read my Bibles (that’s not a typo) in my home, if at all; I speak about God in safe places, with safe people (meaning like-minded people), if at all. I imagine I’m not alone.
There’s more than this. I know this isn’t the abundant life Jesus promised. And if it sounds like I’m neck-deep in another Jeremiad, another [quarter-life? third-life?] crisis, it’s because I am. Except this time it’s a faith-crisis, one that’s been going on for some time and only seems to be coming to a head.