That is the deepst truth, right there. Who we are as a person is ultimately the message. Not just your words, not just your thoughts. Who you are as a person. That is the message.
Let’s explore the medium of “you.”
1. You have a body. Do not underestimate the power and the importance of the body. And here’s why. Because God took a clod of dirt, breathed into it and created us. God made our bodies for some reason. Then, God poured himself into a body, in the person of Jesus. Our bodies are an extraordinarily powerful medium.
We all have three different bodies, or three different aspects. 1) physical, 2) “energetic” body, 3) “essential” body. Understanding and learning to work with these three bodies is how you become a better conductor of the divine in the world.
Your ENERGETIC body includes things like emotions: love, anger, sadness, fear, etc… You can feel someone’s “presence.”
Energy always follows attention.
Perhaps the most primal and root energy is sexual energy. This is way beyond body parts and reproductive purposes. Sexual energy is actually connected with vitality, life, and the drive to create. It is about connectedness, the force that draws people together. Creativity, life, connection.
Just like we’re all gifted with a different physical body, we are also gifted with a different energetic body. We have limits, energetic “footprints,” and unique characteristics. People like Michael Jackson, Bono, Oprah, have tremendous energy.
Your ESSENTIAL body is unchanging, and limitless. There is nothing you can do to expand your essence. The only thing that changes is your access to it. Example: Mother Teresa. She lived in a place of fearlessly and endlessly giving her life away, aware that she is made of the same thing that God is made of, the DNA of the divine. When you have that awareness, you have nothing to lose, and nothing to hang on to. Example: Paul. The very spirit that raised Jesus from the dead lives in you.
Jesus talks about essence when he prays “the glory that you have given me, I have given to you.” John 17:22-23, one body, one essence, that you and I are merely waves on the same ocean. Our essence is wide-open, free, and one with God.
When you live this way, forgiveness is inevitable.
A few practices for energy and essence.
Your physical body is the conductor of your energetic body. Shoulders forward, chest sunken, hunched over, feet tapping, furrowed brows… all of that is like putting a kink in a hose. How you posture your body will affect how energy can flow. Use your breath to dissolve the tension. Yoga, tai chi, etc., are all helpful ways of harnessing and releasing the energy.
We are imitative creatures. Whatever energy you gift your community with, they will respond with.
Also understand how this energy can be misused. We all have a shadow. The moment we disown it is the moment it has power to own us.
First, acknowledge that you have a shadow. Whenever there is light in the world, there are shadows. Accept this. Second, uncover your shadow. If you want to know what your shadow is, think about the thing you fear or despise the most; because that thing is in you. Third, own it. Pick that thing you hate, try them on like a warm coat, accept that they fit, and claim it (“I am the most arrogant person in the world.”) Now ask, are you still breathing? Are you still alive? Does God still love you? Is this a surprise to God? Not really. Does it disturb God? Not really. Then, why does it disturb you so much?
Regarding essence, many of the practices are connected with silence and solitude. The essence is something you must eat and know, not something you can believe and read.
Breath. You may realize that God is always in you. Breath and spirit are one and the same in the ancient imagination in almost every language. In our modern Western thinking, we have segregated the two. In every passage in the Bible, you can substitute “breath” for “spirit.” If you want to know what God is really like, then contemplate what breath is really like; this breath is faithful. The breath of God that raised Jesus from the dead, that gave life to these dry bones, just danced within you. You cannot separate yourself from God anymore than you can separate yourself from your breath. You can’t give your breath to anyone else. It’s just for you. And you get just enough, just what you need, until one day you breathe your last, and you depart your body.
In your essence is your unending peace. That is the source of wisdom and knowledge, and compassion. If there is anything that this world needs, it is peace, wisdom, compassion, from its preachers.
This should be our objective in this life; cultivate and develop uncommon connection to our essence, and develop our energy as a gift to others, to help them become more receptive to God.
“There’s no such thing as a good preacher, only a good person preaching.”
May we all become better conductors of God’s life and light in this world.
— VIA —
Recently, several of our attendees have mentioned how they’re so thankful that we are not doing “meet and greet” during our services. They have communicated the tense and nervous feeling they get when the music is done, because they’re bracing themselves for this segment of the service that, especially for introverts, is a mini-terror. I am thankful we have decided to nix this element from our services. There is truth to this energy and essence, and there is profound ministry that could happen by paying close attention to the things that attend to our souls.
I am actually moved and touched by this. May my life may become more in touch with the essence and energy of God’s Spirit, and that that connection would breath on others the breath of life.