It was delight to meet another of my wider blog community recently – Sheila Pritchard. While relatively new to blogging I’ve read Sheila for years, first in her regularly columns for the now defunct Reality magazine, and more latterly her wonderful little book The Lost Art of Meditation (pub. 2003). In fact, Sheila wrote one of the most formative articles I’ve read – Wells and Fences.
Today I was struck by this Richard Rohr quote on her blog. Its content has figured in a number of conversations over the last few weeks and months.
I hope you’ve met at least one “Kingdom person” in your life. They are surrendered and trustful people. You sense that their life is okay at the core. They have given control to Another and are at peace, which paradoxically allows them to calmly be in control. A Kingdom person lives for what matters, for life in its deepest and lasting sense. There’s a kind of gentle absolutism about their lifestyle, an inner freedom to do what they have to do—joyfully. Kingdom people feel like grounded yet spacious people at the same time, the best of the conservative and the best of the progressive types at the same time.
Kingdom people are anchored by their awareness of God’s love deep within them and deep within everyone else, too. They happily live on a level playing field, where even God has come to “pitch his tent” (the literal translation of John 1:14).
Adapted from Jesus' Plan for a New World: The Sermon on the Mount, pp. 110-111 (Bold text is the actual quote)
The section of the book that the quote is from continues, “…Whatever they are after, they already seem to be enjoying it – and seeing it in unlikely spaces. Kingdom people make you want to be like them… [Mostly, though, Kingdom people lead … ordinary lives… Kingdom people are anchored by their awareness of God’s love deep within… When you live in the Kingdom, you live in a “threshold space” between this world and the next. You learn how to live between heaven and earth, one foot in both worlds, holding them precious together…”