KEEP IT SIMPLE
The greatest challenge for most of us who want to go deeper spiritually, and to do so in community, is to find ways that are simple enough to hold the complexity.
Just as Jesus is a gate where the sheep can come in and go out and find pasture [John 10:7 9], we too want to be a gate through which people can come in and go out with ease. We want to make concrete for others the openness and breadth of Jesus’ way, as welI as its yet to be discovered treasures. The authentic church will hold the tension between easy and difficult, broad and narrow.
We want processes for this introductory group that are simple enough to enter easily, yet hold the potential of leading us into the untold depths of Christ. We want to be flexible enough to allow the Spirit room to play and yet sturdy enough to hold up under the pressures that inevitably will come.
A FIVE STEP PROGRAM
We have chosen to begin with a simple five step program. The processes of other groups might be different. Changes can be made freely as each group is guided to do so, but we suggest that they be made toward greater simplicity, not greater complexity.
Just as we have tried to keep this little guidebook as simple as possible (while assuming that most readers are familiar with “church language”), it is important to be as straightforward and plain as possible when we share the purposes and hopes of this group.
The following, which some of the groups use as part of a unison litany, states our intentions in language that we hope will speak to all, with or without overtly “religious” experience.
Together– None of us can become free alone. We will spend one hour together every week, sharing our struggles and joys.
Time In the beginning, we will set aside at least 15 minutes a day for personal prayer and scripture reading, with the intent of getting to know Jesus and sensing how much God loves us. We also will commit to pray for each other,
Task Jesus loves us deeply and passionately and calls us to give back to others. We will seek to find the task that God has for us to do. We want to be with those who are suffering and to help change the unjust structures that cause the suffering.
Take We will take hold of Jesus, the Liberator, who tears us away from the worldly values and systems that bind and kill us. We will name those things in ourselves that keep us from living in a new way of nonviolent love and freedom, and offer them up for healing.
Tell As we are being liberated and freed, we will tell others about the Source of our new freedom.