'There is no space for iceberg lettuce in the kingdom of God', says church planter Ryan Fasani. In addition to explaining why that is the case, he speaks with Will about how his experiences in ministry and his own soul searching have changed his understanding of his calling. One element of his self-understanding involves reconciling the demands of his work with paying attention to the people in his daily life, including developing his relationship with and witnessing the wonder of his children growing up. Although his work on the front lines of ministry is often misunderstood, he finds nourishment in finding like-minded people in his tradition who support him.
Below's highlight from today's Forecast has been lightly edited for clarity and concision.
Coming alive and facing oneself
Howard Thurman, the 20th-century preacher, activist and mystic, said something along these lines as it relates to vocation: calling is essentially what makes you come alive because what the world needs is people to come alive. That's not in some ecstatic sensitivity way or some July 4th celebratory-with-fireworks kind of way.
I think of what he said as profoundly meaning alive deep within oneself. That is not without encountering darkness, challenge, our shadow self, our idiosyncratic 'demons'. When we are willing to enter into those dark corners and sit there and learn from them, I think we are taking the necessary vocational risk and truly hearing what God's voice has for us from within.
One of my best friends and therapists from Hawaii, after I left, said this when I was in a very dark season: Ryan, if you keep running from it, it will never teach you. You must sit with it...There I believe is what Howard Thurman meant. When we get glimpses of hope there, we truly are beginning to hear our vocation.
Rev. Ryan Fasani is a pastor, writer and farmer living in the US Pacific Northwest. Learn more about him on his website here.
Will is a co-host of Forecast.
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