Seeing More: Contemplative and Holiness Streams
Dear Kaleid Women,
Happy Friday to you! We were grateful to share some Kaleid words with you last week – story, lens, and kaleidoscope. As you experienced the first week of 2019, were you touched by the power of fresh perspectives? The joy of a new page on a new week with a new date?
We are eager to receive a fresh perspective on our faith journey when Sharol Hayner leads us on February 2. Sharol will share ideas from Richard Foster’s book Streams of Living Water, in which he teaches the six streams of the Christian faith. She will talk about women who have lived deeply committed lives inside of these traditions, and she will share some spiritual practices to help us go further in each of them.
Over the next three weeks, we’ll give you a small taste of the six streams to whet your appetite for the feast Sharol will bring on February 2.
First, a quote that reminds us that all the Christian traditions have out of people’s desire to more powerfully walk in the ways of Jesus: to follow Him.
“Too often in our concern to make doctrinal points we rush to expound upon Jesus’ death, and in so doing we neglect Jesus’ life. This is a great loss. Attention to Jesus in his living gives us important clues for our living.”– Richard Foster
Stream #1: The Contemplative Stream – “A life of loving attention to God”
This tradition teaches that following Jesus involves following His pattern of intimacy with the Father. Prayer was a hallmark of Jesus’ life and ministry. Jesus taught His disciples to pray, and He spoke His words of prayer to God in the most intimate of ways by addressing God as “Abba.” The contemplative tradition leads us closer to the Father by teaching us to pray as naturally and deeply as we breathe.
Notable Figures: Phileena Heuertz, Thomas Merton, Madame Guyon, Brother Lawrence, Benedict of Nursia
Stream #2: The Holiness Stream – “A life that functions as it should”
This tradition teaches that following Jesus involves imitating His virtuous life. In the face of the temptations in the wilderness – political, economic, and religious – Jesus rejected earthly power structures and turned to serving, suffering, and dying as the messianic way of love. Jesus modeled the way of His Father. The power of the Holy Spirit allows us to live according to that way, as well. The holiness tradition shows that as we act out love’s way (“Love your neighbor as you love yourself” being the sum of the law and prophets), we embody a more mature, consistent, and obedient faith via our actions.
"Do All the Good You Can,
By All the Means You Can,
In All the Ways You Can,
In All the Places You Can,
At All the Times You Can,
To All the People You Can,
As long as Ever …
… You Can!"
- John Wesley
Notable Figures: Dietrich Bonhoeffer, John & Susanna Wesley, Teresa of Avila, Thomas a Kempis
Consider these two prayers, one calling us to deeper contemplation and one calling us to deeper purity and consider praying one of them each day for the coming week.
P.S.: We can’t wait to be with you on the 2nd! Sign up here!
** Summaries taken from Chapter 1 of Streams of Living Water by Richard Foster.
For more on folks who followed Jesus in these traditions, we recommend reading Vintage Saints and Sinners by Karen Marsh. A great read!!