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What's Essential

I love personality quizzes.  

I recently became intrigued by the Enneagram types, have been known to investigate my Meyer-Briggs type, and even found out my Hogwarts house.  You might think they are bologna or worthless, and you might be right.  But, I think they are insightful, reflective, thought-provoking, convicting, and frankly, fun.  

I also love spiritual gift inventories, which I participated in during an adult study at church once upon a time, and in another study, some time later, I participated in a study about defining my faith.  Those things are life-changing, eye-opening, and somehow super comforting.  To be sitting in a place where you are really understanding what and why you believe what you do is incredibly peaceful, even when some of your answers are I don't know.  Furthermore, it allows you to more easily identify when or why those beliefs change.  I recommend taking that journey if you are offered it.  

Faith Essentials

Recently I was challenged to boil down my faith essentials to three statements.  I chose four.  (So, I guess my fifth essential is that rules are made to be broken.)  It was fun and challenging, and also something I would recommend you try sometime.  Here are mine, I would love to know yours:

  • We belong to each other.  Now, I borrowed this one from Glennon Doyle Melton.  If you haven't read her book, Carry On Warrior, you should, you really should.  Her theology and beliefs line up so closely with mine, I was astonished.  Sometimes one can feel alone in one's thoughts and feelings and deep rooted beliefs, and it was a balm to my spirit to discover her book and her delicious, bold writing.  "We belong to each other," is a statement of belief that humans, created in the image of the Divine, are intrinsically tied together and are called by that same God to take care of one another like family, because we are.  It is a statement that, to quote Glennon from her website that we are called to be "bringing slices of heaven to Earth. And heaven is just a place where the illusion of separation disappears. There is no me or you or mine and yours left. We are all ONE. "  Yep, that fits.
  • Namaste. Perhaps associated with a respectful bow at the end of yoga, this is an ancient Sanskrit term that can be loosely translated to mean, "The Spirit that lives in me, salutes to the Spirit that lives in you." In India, it is oft used as a simple greeting, meaning, "I bow to you."  But what I am claiming is that fuller meaning, the Spirit, the Divine, the Light in me, recognizes, salutes, honors, bows to the One in you. Yep, that fits.
  • Do justice, love mercy, walk humbly with your God.  Straight from Biblical scripture, in the Old Testament, Micah 6:8, it is especially meaningful with the couple of verses preceding, in which a person of God is asking what is expected of them to honor God, what offerings, what sacrifices, what gifts should be given to please God?  And the answer begins, and I paraphrase, "You already know, child, God already told you what to do, what is good, to do justice, love mercy, walk humbly with your God." Simple.  Simply beautiful.  Yep, that fits.
  • This little light of mine, I'm gonna let it shine.  Perhaps you sang along.  Perhaps you sang that to your child today.  I sure hope you did.  Light has been a powerful symbol in my faith development in recognizing who God is and who Jesus asked us to be in the world, and also in my battle with depression.  The image of being broken so light can get in is moving, but so is the idea that our brokenness lets our light out.  "Hide it under a bushel? No!  I'm gonna let it shine."  Yep, that fits.

At least those fit for me.

And maybe those fit for you too, but I bet if you take some time for introspection and really dig deep, you too can find your faith essentials.  Share them?



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