[in]complete: Ways & Means in everything.

Continuing from yesterday

In this matter of ways, the how of following Jesus and taking up with the world cannot be depersonalized by reduction into a how-to formula. We are involved in a highly personal, interrelational, dynamic way of life consisting of many elements — emotions and ideas, weather and work, friends and enemies, seductions and illusions, legislation and elections — that are constantly being rearranged, always in flux, and always in relation to our very personal and holy God and our very personal (but not so holy!) brothers and sisters.

Ways and means permeate everything that we are in worship and community. But none of the ways and means can be compartmentalized into functions or isolated as concepts apart from this comprehensive biblical Trinitarian world in which we follow Jesus. They permeate everything we are and do. If any of the means we use to follow Jesus are extraneous to who we are in Jesus — detached “things” or role “models” — they detract from the end of following Jesus. Do our ways derive from “the world, the flesh, and devil” of which we have been well warned for such a long time? Or do they serve life in the kingdom of God and the following of Jesus in which we have been given, historically and liturgically, a long apprenticeship?

—Eugene Peterson, The Jesus Way: a conversation on the ways that Jesus is the way, 2.

(More tomorrow…)