What or who is the “blazing center” of your life? Around what “blazing center” does your life orbit? What is the main source for your life’s rejuvenation, radiance, warmth, and vitality?
The first words God speaks in the Bible are “Let there be light!” And there was light. God alone precedes all light, is the source of all light. As Psalm 36:9 tells us, “in your light, we see light.” God alone is the “blazing Center” of all life, all light, all inspiration, all radiance, all warmth, all life rejuvenation and vitality.
As mortal creatures who live upon planet earth, without light, we die. The light we receive in this life comes mostly from the star at the center of our solar system, known as the Sun. There was at time, not that long ago, when most people, including most Christians believed the Sun and all the planets revolved around the Earth. The belief was that the Earth was the Center. We on planet Earth were focal point of our entire system of heavenly bodies. Millions of people were taught this view, and it was also the official view of the Church.
Then along came Nicolaus Copernicus (1473-1543), living about the same time as Martin Luther. Copernicus showed through scientific methodology, that the Earth rotated around the Sun, not visa versa. Copernicus’ book, De revolutionibus orbium coelestium (On the Revolutions of the Celestial Spheres), was published just before he died in 1543, causing a major shift and controversy among the scientific and religious worlds of 16th century Europe.
How unsettling it is to discover that I am not center of the universe! When I get moved out of the center, a void opens up in my life that needs to be filled. As Aristotle was known to say, “Nature abhors a vacuum.” Many people spend years of their lives seeking a Center around which they may reorient their lives.
In January, 2020, I attended the national celebration gathering of the denomination with whom I am affiliated, the Evangelical Covenant Church. At this event, held in Chicago, IL, our President, Rev. John Wenrich, introduced us to a new 2020 emphasis in the Covenant Church called “The Blazing Center,” an emphasis upon the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of the living God as “The Blazing Center” of all we do, all we are, all our lives, every breath and moment.
“As Covenant people, we affirm a conscious dependence on the Holy Spirit. In 2020, we are committed to taking time to focus our attention on the mission that Jesus gave us and the power source he has provided for us to accomplish it” (quoted from covchurch.org).
The Covenant Church, as a national denomination has provided in 2020 The Blazing Center Resource Suite, a collection of resources “specifically designed to ignite a passion to see the Holy Spirit to move through our congregations, out of our churches, and into our communities.”
One of these resources we just put into place with the leaders of Cannon Beach Community Church last week was moving our meetings out of business as usual mode (minutes, reports, decisions), and into Blazing Center attentiveness. The Covenant Church provides a clear way to shift church meetings with a one-page document titled, Agenda of Thirds, “a Spirit centered approach to meetings.” This shift caused us to ask at the beginning of our monthly meeting last Thursday evening, “In what ways is the Holy Spirit moving or working in my life?” During the middle part of the meeting, we together asked ourselves, “In what ways is the Holy Spirit working and moving through our Church or Community?” Towards the conclusion of our meeting, we asked, “Based upon how the Holy Spirit is at work among us, what decisions do we need to discuss?”
What or who is the “blazing center” of your life? Around what “blazing center” does your life orbit? What is the main source for your life’s rejuvenation, radiance, warmth, and vitality? May you keep being drawn into the Blazing Center of God’s Holy Spirit!