Like an Animal of the Forest

January 20, 2016



Here’s a fragment from today’s work on a book about Holy Communion:

To what can we compare the Beloved Community of God? It is like an animal of the forest. It comes of its own accord. We cannot make it appear, and no amount of beating the bushes will flush it out. All we can do is prepare the optimal conditions: bringing what we have to share, risking vulnerability to the other, opening ourselves to the Spirit. If we are patient, and keep coming back, the creature may come near: standing silently at the edge of the firelight, bringing an awe-inspiring glimpse of a different world, joining our gathering just out of reach. Even then, we cannot capture the creature and display it whenever we want. There are no sacred words or gestures that will command it to return. All we can do is keep returning to prepare, keep doing our part, knowing that this beautiful, unpredictable creature is out there, somewhere beyond the first line of trees. In this way it is the creature who trains us for communion.



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