On occasion I have been asked "Where are you coming from with I am Significant? Is it self help / self improvement? Or is it spiritual / faith stuff? Is it for the average Joe or the pastor or the business leader? What is it?" I smile and say "Yes, and more!"
I am coming from a place that Merton so aptly describes - as did many of the Christian greats throughout history - it's all spiritual or none of it is! We understand that we are whole people - body, soul and spirit - all at once. To isolate parts of ourselves into individual, unique parts doesn't bring wholeness nor can we experience wholeness when we seek to do so with day to day life. The line between secular and sacred really serves no healthy demarcation in the lives of people, especially Christian ones because we are created as physical beings who are at the same time, completely spiritual beings. It is not possible to separate one from the other and be truly human.
Let us also consider, we have given ourselves to another freely and willfully. This choice to give ourselves to God opens us to a new way of living - a new way of being human. By this I mean that no longer do we choose a way which utilizes power to exploit, control or manipulate others (even for their own good) but a way of stewarding power by giving it away, by choosing to love as we have experienced love and allowing this love to manifest in all aspects of our lives. Paul showed us in Galatians about becoming love when he spoke about fruit of the Spirit. By choosing to accept the amazing love of God we are changed, and from the over flow of the relationship with divine love, we can love others.
The kind of love I am talking about is not a sappy, romantic, spineless kind of love but a love that contends without ever manipulating or keeping score. It is patient and kind, it serves, lays its life down for others, always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. The kind of love I am talking about is a love which conquers death. A love which overcomes sin by making us its executioner. As the reality of divine love transforms us into the likeness of love (Christ), turning from our shame-birthed-sin; sin is destroyed. The perfect love of God inspires and fuels this turning. By turning away from sin (repentance) - sin is destroyed. More specifically, this is not just turning away from something but a turn towards the person of perfect, divine love - Jesus.
So my desire with IamSignificant.ca is to introduce people to the practicality of faith in real life. To help us all understand, as whole people, that whether we are on the mission field, the pulpit or at coffee, around our family dinner table, the work place or school, that living loved by God and loving others is foundational to it all - writing an email, dealing with conflict, leading and motivating employees, raising children and dealing with relationships.
Moreover, I am seeking to inspire and equip Christian leaders to live deeply from the Love Paradigm and thus equip the people they serve to live deeply in whatever setting they find themselves. This includes healthy freedom from rule laden religion which seeks to substitute religious structures for relationship, while at the same time providing meaningful tools so people can cultivate their own vibrant relationship with God.
My dream is to help leaders of faith communities to consider healthier ways of leading, wider ways of thinking about church which empowers people for life (mission) in the world they live in and not relegated to the service of the structures of church. Healthy structures will serve the life of those we lead not the other way around!
As communities, I dream to see them become a sign and a wonder to those who are seeking. The hallmark of healthy Christian community is how we love and care for one another. Jesus said 'they will know you are my people because of the way you love and care for one another". Healthy communities relate to each other as a mutual love society - serving, caring, sharing and nurturing one another towards healthy faith in Christ, because of Christ, which includes healthy formation and mission. Communities rooted in genuine divine love are the safest places on earth.
I am convinced that through the love paradigm, all of life is sacred. Each decision, each action and each word can be sacred and these moments choices, actions and words combine over time to create a sense significance in individual and corporate lives of real people, living authentic and deep faith in the everyday of real life. Real faith works in real life - in the joys, successes, excitement of birth and prosperity, as well as in the failures, the challenges, sickness, poverty and death.