Sunday, September 17 2006
"Now God designed the human machine to run on Himself. He Himself is the fuel our spirits were designed to burn, or the food our spirits were designed to feed on. There is no other. That is why it is just no good asking God to make us happy in our own way without bothering about religion. God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing." Mere Christianity
When Lewis asserts that God is the fuel for our souls he is basically saying that human beings were created to be in relationship with God. After all, even God is in relationship within God's self--Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Thus Augustine liked to refer to the three members of the Trinity as the Lover, the Beloved and the Love Between Them. That love relationship is fundamental to God's own being. So it should come as no surprise that human beings, created in God's image, are designed to live in a love relationship with God and with one another.
Lewis's own favorite analogy for the Trinity is that of a dance. Father, Son and Holy Spirit are like the partners in a dance, and our Triune God invites us to enter into that Great Dance. Until we join in that celestial movement we do not even know what we were really created for. If we never enter into the dance we will have failed to discover the greatest joy of life itself. But when we do enter the dance we find love, joy, peace and true happiness.
How do we do that? How do we join in the Great Dance? How do we take in the fuel our spirits were designed to burn, the food we were designed to feed on? Whatever analogy one uses, the answer is the same. We must hear God's invitation to the dance in Scripture. We respond to the invitation through prayer. We join in the dance through sacrament and worship. We discover the fellowship of brothers and sisters of the dance as we do. And we invite others to join in the dance through outreach. Word and sacrament, prayer and fellowship are all ways that we feed on God, take on board the divine fuel for living. These are all essential elements to "abiding in Christ". And Jesus says, "As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love." (John 15:9)
"God, of thy goodness, give me thyself; for thou art enough for me, and I may ask nothing that is less than may be full worship to thee; and if I ask anything that is less, I am ever in want: but only in thee I have all." Lady Julian of Norwich 1342-1416