What landed Jesus on the Cross is the preposterous idea that common, ordinary, broken, screwed up people could be godly!” (Pg 21-Messy Spirituality-Mike Yaconelli)
That is one quote from the book we are studying during this Lenten season. And I believe it is a profoundly insightful one!
You see one of the challenges we face is the seeming difference between our “religious experiences” and those that we hear about and read about in our Sacred Scriptures.
Not many of us will ever experience the call from our God to sacrifice our first born son, as Abraham did with Isaac.
Not many of us will have the blinding experience of Paul and be knocked off our proverbial horse.
Not many of us will experience the beatific visions of Peter, James and John on the mountain top of Horeb.
But, I think we need to remember…our spiritual experiences are no less real, potent, liminal and authentic as any of those we read in Sacred Scripture.
If we have ever experienced a miscarriage, or Sudden Infant Death of an infant or child in our own families, or in the families of our friends, then we have touched the experience of Abraham and Isaac.
If we have sat in vigil at the death of a loved one or a friend, or learned of those realities, and felt the depth that is has shaken in our bones, then we have touched the experience of Paul.
If we have met our loved one who has passed in our prayer or our dreams, and felt their presence, their love, and their peace, then we have touched the experience of Peter, James and John.
How can we say that our experiences are like those of our ancestors—there are characteristics of foundational liminal spiritual experiences….here are just a few…
Fundamental, or foundational liminal spiritual experiences, leave us with nearly speechless.
-The call that my Dad had died….all I can remember is not being able to talk and seeing the sign—Story City Iowa….
Foundational liminal spiritual experiences often leave us with a profound sense of meaning and purpose in our lives.
-When I crashed my airplane
Foundational liminal spiritual experiences, often happen in a suspended sense of time and place.
-When Kathy and I experienced our miscarriage—sureal and unreal
Foundational liminal spiritual experiences leave us with a different orientation toward life, the world and often the Divine than we had before the experience.
-I met a woman this past week who’s sister and her two year old daughter were murdered. And I can assure you, that experience has changed my life and my outlook.
The fact is my friends, that Spiritual Experiences do happen to us and our lives are truly not that far from the seemingly distant stories that we hear in our Scriptures.
They just have different names, times, places, circumstances and characters, but believe me they are real, authentic and impactful.
You see I believe Mike Yaconnelli is right when he said: What landed Jesus on the Cross is the preposterous idea that common, ordinary, broken, screwed up people could be godly!” (Pg 21)
Maybe one of the greatest gifts we could give ourselves this Lenten Season is the time, the time to reflect on the holiness that permeates our lives and our experiences. Maybe its time to stop for a moment and put a marker in these forty days. And say—yes—God is here—right here—right now—and that is all that matters.
I wonder what our markers are?
I wonder if we can be silent long enough to realize how holy we really are?