Awe & Gratitude

“Awe and gratitude must be expressed or they remain unplanted seeds.  Ironically, the more a friend has meant to me, the more difficult it is for me to tell him what he has brought to my life.  Such inarticulate awe and gratitude for a human face and for companionship lead us to a new level of worship not for humankind, but for God.  How can I thank you enough?  I can’t.  The depths of awe and gratitude for a human embrace must either transcend the horizontal or taper off in a quiet, wordless despair.  We are either propelled to a vertical world or saddened that even the richness of the horizontal is still not enough.  Horizontal, human awe and gratitude eventually will either become a self-indulgent demand for more or will drive us to enter into the heavens to rejoice in the invisible maker of all glory.”

But God gives us a way to look one another full in the face while peering into the heavens.  We can commune with him and with each other through communion.  In the early church, communion was not a religious event held in a church; rather, it was a part of the ordinary meal, eaten together as a family but set apart as a time to lift the cup and divide the bread.  Ingesting Christ’s body and drinking his blood was distinct from the meal itself, but it took place within the context of ordinary gatherings for nourishment and conversation.  We are to be in community with the world in a similar way, even while we remain compellingly different.

– Dan Allender

Are you “in community” the way Allender describes it?  How?  Where?  With whom?


2 Responses

  1. I’ve only been in that sort of “awe and gratitude” relationship with a very few people. Most of us live far apart now, but it’s those kind of people that I feel close to no matter how many months go by without contact. These are the friends that we don’t even call each other “friends” any more…we are family. And when we’re together we laugh, act stupid, and deepen each other’s faith without even trying to be super spiritual. It seems like God grows us just be us being together.

    But I fear I have rambled and not really answered the question?

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