20 “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21 that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22 I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one— 23 I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.
24 “Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.
25 “Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me. 26 I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them.”
John 17: 20-26
I am sitting in the convening convention for the formation of our new diocese and I have been reminded of Jesus’ words to his church for the second time in two days. They are words of mystery and unity. Mysterious because we cannot know how this takes place–that we are a part of Christ and that gives us access to the Father and his own presence within us. Unifying because Jesus says that as we become a part of him, we are caught up together in him to the Father.
Just because Jesus says it is so doesn’t mean we understand it or feel it. Yet this morning, sitting in this “business meeting” of the church, we have had a time of worship where the Lord has been lifted up, has been glorified and I know unity–that it is not simply a theological construct or something known with the mind, but perceived and participated in with my spirit resonating with the Holy Spirit.
This is not something I can explain–I can only acknowledge the mystery. But I thank God that I don’t need to understand it to participate in it and let it refresh me for the next leg of my journey.
For more on the Convening Convention, visit www.midwestanglican.org.