Finding Church invites us all to recognize the church Jesus has been building for two thousand years, even beyond the failed attempts of humanity to do it for him. This church is his wisdom, spoken into the world. The way God frees humanity to live in his affection and then how that love flows to others with great grace and joy provides a profound example of the truth and reality of God. Sadly, that process gets lost in all our human activity to do for God what he simply wants to give to us. A friend from England sent me the following words that came out of a time of reading Jeremiah and captures by the phrase, “This is what the Lord says.” She began to see how a vibrant church is his way of speaking to the world. I hope you are inspired by her words like I was:
The Church Rising
By Anne McGowan
This is what the Lord says:
This, the church,
She the bride, glorious without spot or wrinkle.
Born out of brokenness, out of grief
Bearing in her body the sufferings of her Beloved
Full of Joy and Hope and Glory.
She has been quiet, unseen, her beauty hidden
Behind steeples and bells,
Behind long winded words and hell fire with brimstone
Behind false shepherds and false gospels
Behind strange fire and witchcraft
Behind well intentioned but shackling care and control
It’s been a long time but now
He is calling her forth
He is saying her name,
You hear it, like a whisper on the wind,
It echoes in your dreams,
She is the this, She is what the Lord is saying.
In every moment he is sounding her name
Until every rock and tree
Lamb and lion shake with the sound.
For this has been their groaning, for so long
And she is rising,
Shaking off the dust and mothballs of her fear induced coma.
She is his Beloved and He is hers.
To her he makes known the unfathomable riches that are in Him.
Through her he makes known the manifold wisdom of God
To all those who sought to keep her hidden, quiet and afraid.
Can you Hear your name,
Hear Your Name
for you are She