Together we’re heavy

CS Lewis had a rule which ran something like this: always read two old books before reading a new one.
When he talked of old he meant early church fathers and the greeks and medieval literature. When I say old I mean CS Lewis, indeed anyone dead.
I like the principle of the thing.
I’m currently making my way through Life Together (with an equally awful cover like the one in the link) by Dietrich Bonhoeffer.
I don’t know if it’s a character of the German language or the weight of their minds or something lost in translation but reading either Bonhoeffer or Barth is a challenging experience.
This is not a Harry Potter book you read in a day. I get through about 10 pages a sitting.
What determines our brotherhood is what the man is by reason of Christ. Our community with one another consists solely of what Christ has done in both of us
In that statement lies a core part of what it means to be church.
It is not merely a group of individuals brought together by time, taste and context. It is a GOD ordained body of people, reconciled to one another in Jesus.
The “reality” we see is a bunch of disjointed people who struggle to agree on the colour of the curtains never mind the church’s mission.
Bonhoeffer reminds us of the real reality (sorry…) that we are new creations in a whole new kind of relationship to each other. This is no mere human relationship but a spiritual one.
We need to remember that the spiritual reality of what GOD has done is so much more real than the “reality” we perceive.
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July 2010
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