Each Friday I volunteer at an elementary school. Yesterday I worked with a student on spelling and his handwriting was terrible. It appeared he misspelled nearly every word, but as he wrote he also spoke the letters. Listening, I realized he was spelling the words correctly, though they appeared wrong. But I knew he would be graded and judged based on the scribbles.
Chandler Kids’ verse of the month is 2 John 6: “And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love.”
Preparing for the lesson on Wednesday I was struck by the verse’s circular nature. >>>> If we want to love we obey. >>>> If we want to obey we love. >>>> to love we obey >>>> to obey we love.
This circle – round and round – a twirling – made me think of the dance. Richard Rohr (Divine Dance) recalls an ancient tradition that the Trinity is in a dance. Creator – Jesus – Spirit moving and twirling as one in relationship. As the bride of Christ, the church is invited to join this dance. Reading this verse I was reminded of the movement of the dance, its rhythm, is love.
So often, like the handwriting, I judge my neighbor based on how they look. Rather than listening for the voice of our Creator.
God has spoken each of us into being with words that declares we are each a child of God. No matter how we appear, broken scribbles, we are invited into relationship with God. To be swept off of our feet, to dance in the Love of God.
I spoke afterward with the teacher. I did not need to worry about grades or judgement. She already loved the student. Seeing past the handwriting, she extended grace. Which is much like the One who created you and me.
And these are the steps we are invited to follow.
This Sunday we continue our BE vision. This week we focus on BElong. The early church was constantly expanding – in unexpected directions (Gentiles?! – check out Sunday’s passage: Acts 10). Pray that Chandler will join this movement, opening the way for others to be embraced in movement of God’s love! So that everyone will find a place to BElong at Gods table.