I loved hearing Annika read this poem to me as we talked the other evening. It’s so DYNAMIC. You can feel the energy of the encounter.
I presume it harks back to the Hebrew Scriptures, Exodus 3:13-14
“But Moses said to God, ‘If I come to the Israelites and say to them, “The God of your ancestors has sent me to you”, and they ask me, “What is his name?” what shall I say to them?” God said to Moses, “I am who I am.”
If you listen to some of the Anglican/Episcopalian debate about gays in ministry, and the blessing of same-sex unions, one could be forgiven for thinking that God had said, “I am who I was.” I hear some people talk about being Traditional, or claiming to be advocating Orthodox Faith, and somehow it all sounds so static. As though Tradition never changes, and Orthodoxy means being set in concrete.
People, God is Alive and Active. God is a doing word, a living WORD. If you’re looking for something that’s true for all time, you’re probably better off studying Physics, or Pure Mathematics. But if you want Life, seek God . . . preferably within yourself, not in something external.
When I share the Eucharist, I like to use the words, “Food for the journey” as I pass the bread around, and “The cup of community” as I share the wine. That’s what it means for me to make communion: it’s about being on a journey – a journey with companions, people who together (com) share bread (pane). Wherever I do this, in the Cathedral, at the beach, at home with Annika, it’s an Active thing, recognizing the God who is a Mighty Roaring Verb. The God who is between us, among us, WITHIN us. The God who energizes us for ministry. The God who is Love.
As I reflected on what it might mean to live with integrity, I dug out my rather battered copy of the Shorter Oxford Dictionary, and was reminded that the first definition of integrity is “the condition of having no part or element wanting.” Wholeness, completeness, and entirety! I was struck by the synchronicity of Annika reading to me the 23rd Psalm, and focussing on the second part of the first verse: “I shall not want.” Integrity here is the result of having the Lord as my Shepherd. This language may be more at home in the earlier paradigm of Christianity, but that doesn’t mean it has nothing to say to us. In its broadest and most inclusive form, I believe that we will never be fully human, we will never realize our potential, until we acknowledge the spiritual dimension of reality, until we Embrace it, until we Cherish it. Now there are some mighty roaring verbs for you.