Personally, I continue to find this renewal the more that I journey through the liturgy and the liturgical seasons. Pentecost is significant in some ways because of a painful period of ministry in which God renewed and restored me. The calling that God has placed on my life is no more significant than others, but it is one that I have been reminded of as I have strayed from the core to other areas which I have sought meaning. I love the liturgy, though I would not call myself one who is into "high liturgy," but I like the order and form. Yet, in it is not the centrality of faith. Prayer and the Word strengthen me, yet I never can pray enough. It is a continued leaning upon Christ. The great tragedy caused me to turn into Christ. That is what we are all called to in Christ. As we walk on our journey there will be seasons of preparation, seasons of challenge, and seasons of growth. In each of these, we are called to turn into Christ for strength. Our success in faith will only happen with Christ. Now, this success is not like worldly success, but it is a sense of contentment that only Christ can bring. It is about being satisfied in the Gospel and what God is doing. It is seeking to be a light to those that need to know the faith that Jesus Christ. It is a turning into Scripture as the sole norm of faith and life.
Kindle in Me the Fire of Your Love
Before deciding to enter into seminary, my wife and I were afforded the opportunity to experience a Via De Cristo Weekend which is a part of the Cursillo movement. The movement was begun by Roman Catholic priests in Spain and has expanded across the globe in various movements by different names, but the same experience. Via De Cristo is the Lutheran branch of the movement, and another is the Emmaus Walk which has its roots in the Methodist Church. However, both are ecumenical in practice and who can attend. Cursillo is Spanish for "short course." The point is to be confronted by the purity of Christian love. It is a three day weekend, and it is quite powerful for those that are open to the experience. As we enter to end the third day and go out, we live in the fourth day in which we are called to live out the promise given us in our faith. Each time we pray we say as we gather is, "Come, Holy Spirit, fill the heart of the faithful and kindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your Spirit, and they shall be created. And You shall renew the face of the earth. O, God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit, did instruct the hearts of the faithful, grant that by the same Holy Spirit we may be truly wise and ever enjoy His consolations, through Christ Our Lord, Amen." This prayer has returned to me often in my faith journey since this time. Unfortunately, being human, my life does not always live into this, and I need to go through a period of renewal. That is the pattern of life, I believe for most.