Sunday, March 9, 2008

Wild and Dangerous

You know how sometimes something you read just really connects with you on a deep level? I had that experience today. I picked up a little book called A Boy Who Cried Abba by Brennan Manning. It is a parable so it's not really a long story (I read it in about half an hour), but it was powerful!

The basic plot of the story is that there is a young Mexican boy named Willie Juan whose terrible life is transformed from the inside out by a series of encounters with a medicine man. The medicine that the man has is free and it's not for healing your body primarily, it's for healing your soul. At one point in the story the boy goes to the Cave of Bright Darkness to meet the medicine man (El Shaddai) and before he comes to him a voice calls out his name. Willie Juan answers, and asks who are you? This is the response:

"To most I am known as Danger, Willie Juan. I make my presence known in water, wind, and fire. I am Spirit, without shape, form, or face. Those who seek safety try to summon me like a tame lapdog. They crave security instead of growth. They have no tolerance for mystery, certain that they can know everything knowable. The week-kneed do not love Danger. They are afraid I will call them to become what they are not. They call me Comforter for all the wrong reasons and are surprised when no comfort comes to them."

Wow! Take a minute and read that again…

Right now I am doing a conversation series in the Sunday night English service we have here watching and discussing the movie Narnia: The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe. I remember reading that series of books over and over as a kid and all throughout they talk about Aslan (who represents Jesus) as "not a tame lion". I always loved that and it always scared me. Here in this story the name of the Holy Spirit is Danger and that makes me feel the same way.

I do not serve a safe God. I do not serve a God who wants me to know everything and feel secure and comfortable. I serve a God who can change me, transform me, stretch me, and take me places that I've never dreamed of. A God who has more for me than just surviving life. A God who can heal me on the deepest levels and use me to bring healing to others. He has a path for me – a purpose to fulfill the desires that He has placed in my heart.

Does that sound like the God you know? If it doesn't you're missing out. I think that we should let Him out of the safe box that we have shoved Him in and see what a wild, dangerous, fiercely-loving God wants to do with us…