(Note: this is the Categorie introduction for level 1 or the first stage in the Path of the Postmodern Cleric.)
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What are the Spiritual Roots?
“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. John 15:5 (NIV)
We were designed perfectly, to be like oak trees of righteousness. Adam and Eve walked in complete intimacy with God. Sin cut us off from our that relationship and it was restored in Christ. So we became like a tree that was chopped down.
Isaiah 53:5 says that by his stripes we are healed, which can be a tough concept to understand. Think of a branch laying on the ground, cut off from its tree. Now imagine a master gardener comes along and picks up the branch to splice it into another tree. He must first wound that new host tree in order to bind that wounded branch into it.
That’s our condition. Christ crucified tore what was perfect so that we could be restored to it.
This isn’t just a religious sermon. I’m going somewhere with it. If the path of the postmodern cleric is about being a conduit for good things from the Lord then our roots have actually been severed from us and the only access we have to good is through being spliced back into our creator through accepting his death in substitution for our own.
The principles of fluid dynamics are pretty clear on this point. You don’t get any more flow out the end of a pipe or hose than the narrowest part of the hose. This is often called the constraint. It doesn’t matter how big the tank is or what the pressure/suction is. Flow through capacity is limited by the most restricted point.
So the first area to check for a constraint is our connection to God. We read that nothing can take us from his hands (Romans 8:39) and we figure that’s about all there is to it, but as true as it is where God is concerned for our part–we still have free will. Receiving is an action.
If we think we deserve less than God’s trying to give us we’ll have a constraint. If we look at our circumstances and decide they reflect how God feels about us we’ll have a constraint. If we try to bring about God’s will through our own strength we have a constraint. If we believe that God handles the salvation then leaves off sanctifying us until heaven then we have a constraint.
There’s a lot of ways in which we can miss blessings and communications from God meant to grow us up and to bring us into a more intimate walk, so I hope you continue reading the blog posts I mark for level one. Unless/until we realize that God is the only source of good and our path to abundance starts with receiving we will face a lot of frustration.