“You came from God and you will return to God. Your deepest DNA is clearly divine. What else did we mean when we said “God created all things? . . . . You are already spiritual beings, and the only concern and question is “How do I become human?” I believe that’s why Jesus came as a human being instead of an apparition in the sky. He didn’t come to teach us how to go to heaven but how to be a human being here on this earth—which is the creation of heaven now.” From a Center for Action and Contemplation Foundation Set: Gospel Call to Compassionate Action (CD,DVD, MP3)
This quote from Fr. Richard Rohr is so Apprentice-like that I had to share it. The Apprentice program (which is based on three books by James Bryan Smith*) is all about becoming like Jesus. Understanding that Jesus is the model for our lives, we train for “being human” in the ways we see Jesus modeling: keeping Sabbath, creating margin for our lives, living every moment in the presence of God, seeing life as sacramental and not separating secular from sacred, watching for opportunities to share our hope, being last, not first. “How do we become human?” Fr. Rohr asks and answers. By looking to Jesus.
That Jesus reminds us over and over again in the Gospel accounts that the Kingdom of God is NOW. We are part of an eternal kingdom which was and is and is to come. Most of us are okay with the “was” and “is to come.” That’s “spiritual.” What’s “human” is that the Kingdom is also now. Our lives are powered by the Spirit of Jesus here on earth. We don’t have to wait until heaven to experience the with-God life. We are called to be “the aroma of Jesus” here and now. We are directed to minister to “the least of these” here and now. Following Jesus is not just an intellectual journey until we graduate to heaven; it is a commitment to “walk in his dust” every moment. What a calling! What a joy!
*The Good and Beautiful God, The Good and Beautiful Life, and the Good and Beautiful Community.