I have had a lot of life together lately. My boys and I vacated up to the grand’rents for a change of scenery/untapped energy sources to connect with. The boys played; I read (like a book a day – Life Together, Shaped by the Story, Life with God, etc. Like cramming for finals before seminary: my brain kinda hurt); we all chatted about life and the daily and church and bearing the Light of Christ and baptism and the beauty of local blueberries and how long will it take Granddaddy to separate all the jumbled Lego pieces from my brother’s childhood into their proper kits? You know: good stuff.
We came home. Jason’s parents came to town: talking, family showers, missional gatherings, good food.
Northwest Yearly Meeting came, along with Wretched Heat which “encouraged” us to participate in YM moreso than usual: hmmm, sit at home with no a/c and the stir-crazy boys, or deposit boys in programmed childcare and enjoy the conversations and stories of adults in an air conditioned environment? The answer was clear. I even managed the inter-generational ice cream social with two boys up past their bedtimes without the aid of the husband who was serving his time on the softball field (in 90+ temps – we’ll just call it “dedication”).
Then: off to the beach to enjoy time with Jason’s family before dispersal back to our corners of the world. Tomorrow: VBS. Next week: Grad Camp.
That’s a lot of together.
In the midst of that activity, I still find my mind clinging to the thoughts and ponderings and rubix cube cunundrum that my brain is processing of “how do we do Life Together?” I know Bonhoeffer is known for writing his timeless Christian classics, but this book seriously shifted some paradigms in my noggin, and I’m not sure what to do with it. Questions of rhythms of life with a family, emptying oneself, confession – individual and corporate, the compounding elements of ministry (interesting: Bonhoeffer says one must master certain ministries – holding ones tongue, meekness, etc. – before engaging in the ministry of delivering a word; otherwise, it will be too tainted by our desires for outcomes of this Word rather than being empty enough to be a vessel of Truth).
I really want to just sit with this stuff; but I can’t. And I probably shouldn’t: it’s best “field-tested”. If only I can shove the grocery lists out of the foreground of my mind …. or maybe I should see if I missed that ministry of managing consumption chapter. 🙂