In light of the resurrection of Further Up, Further In, I thought I would re-post my first post on the blog which gave a brief explanation of why I began this venture in the first place. Even in light of the blog’s recent reinvention I think the post still speaks.
Well friends, as you can see, I have joined the blogosphere. I sat this morning (Saturday) at Java Bean and had time to simply “surf” the internet and blogosphere for about an hour. I read several terrible blogs that are being used to slander and push personal agendas. I read several good blogs full of good information. And I read other personal blogs full of some brilliant, ridiculous, and irrelevant thoughts and musings on life, faith, and whatever else seemed to come to the users’ mind. Somewhere in the midst of this “surfing” of the blogosphere I decided to start my own.
It seems the first crucial step to a good blog is a clever name. Clever and appropriate names only become so when they are born out of and match up with purpose, so I thought about the purpose of this blog.
The purpose of the blog is this: I love to write and I communicate most clearly and effectively through writing. I feel that my calling in life has led me on this amazing adventure of faith where I sometimes feel unhappy, awkward, insecure, immature, evil, maniacal and overall sinful; but, I also am able to live in the reality of hope, grace, mercy, and redemption and feel happy, elated, joyous, peaceful, rested and content. I am able to live in relationship with a living God. On a daily basis through worship, prayer, meditation, devotion, and conversation I am able to catch glimpses, moments, and periods of a real and true Kingdom of which most of this life is only a dim reflection. And the more I faithfully live out this calling the deeper and brighter and more real this life seems to be. And therefore I go further up and further in with great anticipation and excitement with what my God is leading me towards. The purpose of this blog is to share this adventure further up and further in with anyone who chooses to join with me.
So, why Further Up, Further In? I am a big fan of C.S. Lewis. In the last section of the last book in the Chronicles of Narnia, entitled The Last Battle, all the creatures of Narnia find themselves called by Aslan (the character who represents God in the series) to travel further up and further in. They obey without fully knowing what Aslan means. Somehow the world they are traveling through looks very familiar, having the same mountains, lakes, forests, and colors. But, at the same time it is somehow unfamiliar. Everything seems bigger and there are more colors, and the colors are all deeper and brighter which leads one character to whisper quietly that somehow this world that looks so much like the world they had always lived in and yet looks, “more like the real thing.” So they traveled further up and further in, where “every rock, and flower and blade of grass looked as if it meant more.” And so they travel further up and further up and further in.
Suddenly, the Unicorn neighs, “I have come home at last! This is my real country! I belong here. This is the land I have been looking for all my life, though I never knew it till now. The reason why we loved the old Narnia is that it sometimes it looked a little like this! Bree-hee-hee! Come further up, come further in!”
Friends, this land Lewis speaks of is the land in which we all belong. Hopefully it is the land we are headed for and moving for even as we live in Old Narnia. There are times in this land here and now and in this life where we glimpse the land to come and in those moments, I don’t know about you, but my soul lets loose its own BREE-HEE-HEE! And I am energized to run further up and further in!
So this blog will be a chronicle of the journey further up and further in. Join me if you wish. I don’t know exactly what it will look like, but I would bet that posts will come from everything from preparing sermons each week to conversations with our Church Secretary’s young daughter Claire (who is teeming with personality and young wisdom) to worship experiences to Paul Harvey to NPR to books I am reading and walks with Kelley and Max to Deacon’s meetings to who knows what else.
In The Last Battle, after the Unicorn urged everyone further up and further in they all began to run. “not only the Dogs and the humans but even fat little Puzzle and short-legged Poggin the Dwarf. The air flew in their faces as if they were driving fast in a car without a windscreen. The country flew past as if they were seeing it from the windows of an express train. Faster and faster they raced, but no one got hot or tired or out of breath. If one cold run without getting tired, I don’t think one would often want to do anything else.
If we can run and live and serve and give and love and issue in the Kingdom of God in part in this life why would we ever want to do anything else? Run with me if you will, Further Up, Further In!