Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Lawn Chair Catechism 3.0

Once again I'm linking up with CatholicMom.com's Lawn Chair Catechism series. This week we're reading and discussing Chapter 2 of Forming Intentional Disciples, "We Don't Know What Normal Is."

Even if you didn't read the book, you're welcome to participate. But I highly recommend that you read this book. It's like a retreat in book form. (You can still get it with free shipping from OSV!)

When I hit page 54, I might as well have been looking at a picture of myself when they describe the Catholics who have received their sacraments and actively practice their Faith, but really have not developed a "personal interior journey of a lived relationship with Christ resulting in active discipleship."

I'm an introvert. I don't live life out loud anyway. But after reading this chapter, my conclusion is that the author is talking about what I'm supposed to be doing as a Secular Franciscan:  going "from Gospel to life, and life to the Gospel." Sherry Weddell uses the word "kerygma" and defines it as "the essential nucleus of the Gospel that awakens initial Christian faith." (page 66)

On to the discussion question du jour:  "Are you comfortable talking with others about your relationship with God?"
No, I'm not. I do better writing about it than talking about it, maybe because I have the delete button and arrow keys to help me rearrange the words and figure out exactly what I want to say, rather than stumbling over my clumsy spoken words. And because I can't see my audience, though I do tweet about my faith occasionally with people that I see in person. I can discuss God with one of my neighbors, and with some of the members of the folk group I've been singing with since 2006, but not so much with my family and not with strangers, either.
Plus, I'm not sure I have a good handle on that relationship. I've got a long way to go. And when others talk to me about their relationships with God, I just wind up feeling like a fraud--which proves that I do, indeed, have a long way to go.

My greatest inspiration right now is Pope Francis. Every time I read an excerpt from his homilies, or see his tweets, I am reminded--and challenged--about what it really means to follow Christ. I marvel at his ability to show the world how to live as a disciple.

4 comments:

Ginny said...

I am with you about Pope Francis! He is such an inspiration to me, too. I have heard lots of folks who are not Catholic or who are lapsed talk about how inspiring they find him, too... it's so heartening to hear that.

Deanna said...

Very insightful. It's interesting that you are not sure if you have a good handle on your relationship with God. I often feel that way myself, but for me talking with others helps me process and clarify. We're all working out our salvation as best we can.

Melanie Bettinelli said...

"I'm not sure I have a good handle on that relationship. I've got a long way to go. And when others talk to me about their relationships with God, I just wind up feeling like a fraud--which proves that I do, indeed, have a long way to go."

I feel that way too. I think sometimes I talk a good game on my blog and give people the impression that I have this whole relationship with God thing all sorted out. But most of the time it's messy... what's the Facebook designation for relationships? "It's complicated."

But I also wonder if sometimes talking a big game isn't part of that process. I say things out loud to others or write them on my blog and then realize... hey, I'm not actually living that. I think sometimes that God talks to me in and through those conversations, you know?

I'm not sure if I'm making any sense at all. I definitely agree about Pope Francis, though.

Barb, ofs said...

Melanie, I think that makes perfect sense. And Deanna's comment above confirms the same thing. It's only been recently that I have been able to talk about faith with others, in person...guess I just wasn't ready before.