Monday, November 8, 2010

Fractured and Disconnected

One of my favorite stories in the Bible is the woman at the well. It has some of the most prolific applications to my faith and what it means to be a christian. As I was pondering life this morning I was thinking about a book I was TRYING to read last night about the AIDS epidemic in Africa. Than I kind of flashed to this scripture with the woman at the well. It is the very beginning of the scripture that catches me this morning. Jesus was just chilling out by the well. He wasn't too busy to notice the woman coming to the well. He was connected to the world and what was happening around him. He wasn't rushing from one event to the next responding to all of HIS tasks the needs that His ministry required. This happens in another place in the Bible when Jesus is heading to Lazarus. At the news of his friends illness He begins to head to his house to bring healing. On His way the people that are around Him have a need. Instead of blowing them off to get to one of His closest friends He pauses to help them. He is aware of His surroundings enough to respond to the people. He was connected to His surroundings and the people in them. It was out of this connection, connection to people, connection to His Father, that Jesus operated on a daily basis. We see Jesus make these comments about such things ...."Let no man say to another tomorrow we will go to this village and make money" .... "Don't worry about tomorrow"..... "doesn't the Father dress the flowers of the field and feed the Sparrows".... All of these teachings seem to have one thing in common. They address our obsession with what is coming next. We worry, we plan, we are preoccupied. All of these things keep us from being present right now. The point to the Mary and Martha story in the Bible is not that we need to slow down and be ministered too, it's that we need to be fully present in the moment. If Martha was aware of what was happening she very well may have stopped and been awed by God (who by the way was teaching in her house). There are so many implications to just that one verse and it's meaning (are we aware that God is present where ever we are at right now? and that He is wanting to speak to us, to have our attention right now?). We focus on ourselves way too much. That may be the core issue. We focus on what WE are doing and maybe not enough on what God is doing, on who is around us.

When I connect to the moment right now, I connect with the pain. I connect with the turmoil. I connect with all the voices saying you aren't doing enough or the voices that say you aren't good enough, I connect with my own un-forgiveness. I connect with my failures.

These are perhaps the reasons we all look for ways to get and stayed disconnected. Isn't this the beauty of the internet and all our social online networking? I can stay involved with you without ever having to connect with you. It is a tool to make me feel better about being disconnected. Hey I don't have time to talk to you right now, facebook me......

The good news is this-

That when I connect I also connect to my family. I connect to my kids. I connect to my wife. I connect with my job. I connect with God.

When I connect with God He trumps all that other crap.

When I connect I am alive.

Yes when I connect I feel things, but isn't it better to feel and be alive? or would we rather stay disconnected and live in a self-made prison keeping everything else out and ignoring all the negative crap that is in there with us?