27th February 2019

Dwelling In The Word

(from www.churchofscotland.org.uk)

 

 Over the last three years, one of the Spiritual Practices we have encouraged in those who are involved in Path of Renewal is “ Dwelling in the Word”, a practice that allows us to hear, discern and to speak aloud God’s word for us in a particular moment.
The slow, patient, persistent introduction of this practice into our gatherings in so many different contexts has affected our culture in ways seen and unseen. Unleashing the power of God’s word has led to barriers being broken down, confidence in discerning the mission of God and personal and communal transformation.
As well as being a tool for discernment, Dwelling in the Word also helps to frame and inform our meeting together. By starting our time together listening out for God, we set up a reverence and an expectation that affects how we are with one another. We see the Spirit of God weaving her way in and around all our encounters and discussions that ensue as we continue to meet.
Just one of many examples, for illustration: listening to the words of Jesus echoing through the crowds who were preventing a blind man from getting to Jesus and considering how Jesus reached out to the excluded and marginalised individual (Luke 18:35-43) allowed those engaged in the exercise to know themselves heard and regarded by Jesus and the rest of our time together was informed by hearing Jesus say “Bring him to me” and “What do you want me to do for you.”
Of course none of this should surprise us  - but as we’ve privatised faith and professionalised preaching in so many of our congregations, it has required a slow work of gentle persuasion to encourage individuals to trust that God speaks to and through them. Biblical literacy in Dwelling in the Word has no relevance. Rather, it is the hearing, sharing and responding to the prompting of God in the shared moment that is vital.
A vital spiritual practice and a tool for transformation.

 


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