There’s one educational theme week at Lakeside in which I don’t participate—the interfaith week aka peace and justice week. I use that week to take an art class or get some housecleaning done or go to lunch with friends. I am not on a spiritual journey or pilgrimage. I don’t investigate the twists and turns, the doubts and insights of other religions or quasi-Christian cults. I found Jesus—or rather He rescued me—in 1974. The exhausting journey ended, but not the learning, the joy, the comfort, and the little pieces to fill in the ever widening picture of God’s love, creation, mercy and justice.
When the journey ended I found a small shelter with a little food and water for an exhausted traveler. No more learned lecturers with too much college and not enough faith. No more puzzling over supposed truths in the sacred writings of Buddhism or Hinduism or Islam. No more asking the government to be the failing god in our society. It was peaceful and had a beautiful view. That little shack is now a richly appointed castle of precious stones, luxurious fabrics, glittering art and sensuous music. Why would I step out and follow yet another exhausting path of pot holes, rocks and poison ivy when Jesus has already said, “I am the Way?” If you want to continue on, be my guest. Jesus and I will sit here by the open door and wait for you to return.
Christ with me, Christ before me, Christ behind me,
Christ in me, Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ on my right, Christ on my left,
Christ when I lie down, Christ when I sit down, Christ when I arise,
Christ in the heart of every man who thinks of me,
Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me,
Christ in every eye that sees me,
Christ in every ear that hears me.
Prayer attributed to St. Patrick
Sunday morning worship by Lake Erie