E is for Empty: Don't throw the baby out with the bathwater !
Emptiness may seem like an odd word to choose for a wellbeing alphabet but its probably one of my favourites.
To come to God empty, ready to be filled, to come to the other with a space for their gift not so full of our own need to be needed, is so key to the Renew story. We sit at table together and in the prayer room together without power, empty and ready to learn.
The Greek word in Philippians 2 speaks of Jesus "emptying" Himself and theologians are having quite the debate about what this means and doesn't mean .
It does not mean that Jesus emptied Himself of His character. He is God. Fully God , Fully Man .. that's the whole point of the amazing incarnation. Emmanuel : God with us.
You have heard the expression " Don't throw the baby out with the bathwater"... well I have been reflecting on what it means for me to empty myself as I come to God and what I need to hold onto as the emptying happens. Emptiness for me doesn't mean complete nothingness as I come to meditation . In fact it means proper fullness. If I choose to empty myself of the clutter of worries and preoccupations with other things and just take the Psalm phrase round and round my head , I find that the space created , the emptiness of just sitting with my empty cup can soon fill with an awareness of that which can never empty out. I am loved, I am known , He is present.
What habits do you have in your day that are self emptying ? How are you decluttering your life and mind ? I do find decluttering is a thing that needs doing often ! At present our house in in utter chaos as my husband bravely fits a downstairs loo in preparation for elderly relatives visits over the Christmas period. I am aware that the chaos has meant I have let no-one in for several days . Now here is where there is a glorious difference with God. He doesn't wait until we declutter to make Himself at home. Yes it would be good to make more space for Him but if the Christmas story tells us anything , it tells us that He comes INTO our mess and dwells in it. So emptying and making space for Him is good preparation over this advent period but the truth is He comes to us and makes Himself at home with us anyway .
Now that is GOOD NEWS !