Jean Vanier Is a Genius, Part Two
Every once in a while I'm reminded of the thesis behind Loud Time, which I freely admit gets lost from time to time as any number of topics stir me to write. It's my blog, after all; I can do what I want. But the idea that started this blog was that too often people think that to hear God, to come alongside God, demands that they separate themselves from everyone else. Some, in fact, secretly (even to themselves, I suspect) use "quiet time with God" as an excuse to withdraw from people. I don't doubt that God is present when we retreat from others and quiet ourselves to welcome him, but rather with Loud Time I intended to affirm that God is also present when we gather together. Today I read from Jean Vanier's Community & Growth a lovely iteration of that idea. This dude is a genius.
Many people in community tend to see the times they are alone as times of revitalisation, as opposed to the times of "dedication" or "generosity" they spend with the community. This means that they have not discovered the nourishment of the community.
This comes in the moments when together we discover that we make up a single body, that we belong to each other and that God has called us to be together as a source of life for each other. These times of wonder become celebration. They are like a deep, peaceful and somtimes joyful realisation of our unity and call, of the essential of our lives and of the way that God is leading us. They are a gift, a message of God in the community which awakens the heart, stimulates the intelligence and gives back hope. We rejoice and give thanks that we are together; we become more conscious of God's love and call for the community.