Shadow people

May 8, 2018

Let us not be shadow people. A dark space that is blocked from light by another. A lacking of wholeness. People who are not living life in a whole way.

I feel like most of my life I have lived so much of my life as a shadow person. Someone who lacks a wholeness.

A space broken up by light.

Our journey has led us to a place where I have started to yearn for a wholeness, and my pursuit of that wholeness has led me to the healing church. I have come to believe that the bride of Christ is called to be the place of healing. The Gospel calls us to live a whole, complete life found in the death, resurrection and love of Christ. I have come to believe that the church is the foundation, the mortar, the structure of the place of healing to receive and work for a whole life in Christ.

The whole life, that is found in Genesis One and lost in Genesis three, the whole life that the people of Israel strived and rejected within the Old Testament, this whole life that Jesus demonstrates within his ministry on earth, and ultimately dies for, is often at odds with the full life that our culture promises and challenges us to achieve.

Living your life to the fullest seems like the goal is to cram as many experiences and relationships into your life as possible. Social media seems to exacerbate this line of thinking. Through a small picture we see someone else living on the grass that us greener. The other seems to have more fun, and even a more fulfilling life, because if we can fill our life with good things, it has to become good, right? We even have come up with a phrase, FOMO, which is the fear of missing out.

Missing out in that soul mate everyone else seems to have.

Missing out on that job, that doesn’t feel like work.

Missing out on traveling, on that beach body, on that one perfect meal.

The fear if missing out, the fear of not living our best life is a great lie given to us by our deceiver. God loves us and his interest is in the healing and restoration of our broken world and our broken lives. Instead of living lives full lets live lives that are whole. When we strive to live a whole life we get to wholly participate in our relationships.

When I speak about relationships I am speaking about the relationship we have with our Creator, the relationship we have with our selves, the relationship we have with others, and the relationship we have with nature. All of these relationships are broken by sin and by death, and God has put into place a recovery plan for us who are sick.

God wants us to live within the light, and for that we must be healed. Sometimes our recovery plan digs at our wounds, and is often painful, but without it, we continue in our sickness, in our shadow life.

The Shema is the first step in our recovery plan. It is found in Deuteronomy 6 and it starts with “Hear and Obey” it goes on to say “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength”

Jesus echoes the Shema in the Gospels. In Luke Jesus adds “and love your neighbor as yourself.” In Matthew Jesus adds that it is the greatest commandments and all other commandments hang on it.

Our recovery starts here, because it is the map of living a whole life. In the Old and New Testament we find the people of Israel living in community. One could not live our of community. All of the commandments we see within the Old Testament are based on an understanding of living individually and communally whole. We see that within the New Testament as well, but the communal impact felt a bit more oppressive. The people of Israel were called to live a certain way to be a blessing to all nations. By the time Jesus shows up, the people of Israel have split into multiple sects, have oppressed the poor, the widows, the orphans. The religious leaders used their power to oppress, rather than to lift up. Instead of using the Law to strive for a whole life, the Law is used to divide.

Jesus comes in and calls them, and us, to seek wholeness. He calls us to live in the light that heals. He calls us to submit our lives to death so we may have life.

A life that is “more and better life than they ever dreamed of.” John 10:10

A life that is no longer lived within the shadows. A life that starts having a whole outline.

I am going to discuss the “how” behind healing, based on our conversations we have had in our healing group and some books I have read along the way.

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