This is a four part series on a community approach to spiritual growth. The four parts are Community, Participation, Discipleship and Worship.
There is a lot of mystery hiding below the surfaces of the earth, and just as much hiding below the surface of each one of us.
We humans can harbor dark places. There are recesses within our hearts that bubble up to the surface and astound in their capacity to harm. There are times when we are startled by the orientation of our thoughts, and how we can think so much harm or ill will upon another person, seemingly just after we’ve had a nice cup of coffee or finished a good book. The mind can just be stirred into a dark place out of nowhere. No one is alone in this.
If there is enough flotsam in your mind there will be plenty in the soul. Black, chilled, and glossy, hunkered down, fighting all excavation. It must be found and extracted, somehow.
There is a process by which natural gas is extracted from deep within the earth called fracking. A well line is dug, explosions happen deep within the earth, and gas is released. This is precisely what we need to do with our souls. When we have something within us that is sinful and dark, we need to be able to remove it from our souls. This is what the spiritual disciplines are intended to aid in, but they are not the solution. As much proficiency as we can gain in being a disciplined Christian we cannot be so self-reliant. We need to be in community with one another, helping each other to discern where there are deep down places in our life that need to be removed. Like fracking, if we begin to try and repair our own selves on our own disastrous things can happen. Things like fire coming out of your faucets or having your home filled up with noxious smoke. Or having gag orders placed onto elementary school age children. If we try to repair our own souls things do not go well.
Have you ever tried to repair your own soul? How did it go?
How has another person or a group been instrumental in helping you repair your soul?