we have decided not to die… bandy day 2

[for previous Bandy stuff, read this post]

this is a first draft of a reflection in three sections for the morning worship on the second day.

this will be the backbone of the worship. there’ll be something visual happening behind this… a couple of ideas floating at the moment, neither of which are worth putting here yet.

i decided on the ‘we have decided not to die’ theme weeks ago, when looking at some of Tom Bandy’s writings about how to turn churches around. I only got around to looking up the lectionary reading today. it’s Isaiah 43:18-25. it works.

Part 1:
We have decided not to die.

We have decided not to believe the voices of cynicism
the prophets of doom
the harbingers of despair
the proclaimers of fear
who speak loudly and only of death that’s inevitable.

we have decided not to die.

we have chosen to believe in life.

and now we must learn to live.

Part 2:
Isaiah 43:18-25
The LORD said: Forget what happened long ago! Don’t think about the past. I am creating something new. There it is! Do you see it? I have put roads in deserts, streams in thirsty lands. Every wild animal honors me, even jackals and owls. I provide water in deserts– streams in thirsty lands for my chosen people. I made them my own nation, so they would praise me. I, the LORD, said to Israel: You have become weary, but not from worshiping me…

Part 3:

We have decided not to die.

and now we must learn to live.

to really live
to stretch and wonder and test and dare
to imagine the unthinkable
to defy the gravity of fear and despair
to find the faith that believes there is another story
of life, grace and redemption
and to live as though it is the only story.

we will listen for where God’s heartbeat is giving life to the world
and we will search,
wildly, unceasingly
until we find where our own heartbeat echoes in it.

and though it may mean letting go of all we know,
we will.

for we have decided not to die.

we have decided now to live.