By Henri J. M. Nouwen
Opening thoughts and basis for discussion
Bring people, a joy and peace they are not able to find anywhere else.
We all need a deeper relationship with someone.
Cup of life, Cup of sorrow- joys, sadness and gladness, mourning and dancing are never separated.
Icon of the Resurrection explained
Show two depictions of Crucifixion
When I lifted up from the earth, I shall draw all the people to myself (John 12:32)
Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer before entering His glory? Luke 24:26
We keep forgetting this truth and become overwhelmed by our own darkness. We need to become angels for one another.
Drinking the Cup
When guests arrive to our house the first thing we usually do is ask , would you like something to drink? It breaks the ice and often an atmosphere of friendship and of intimacy is created. Refusing it is avoiding intimacy. Offering the drink leads to opening up a conversation. Often times we may not expect or ever be able to hear.
“Often when we wish to comfort people we say: “Well , it is sad this has happened to you, but try to make the best of it.” But “making the best of it” is not what drinking the cup is about. Drinking our cup is not simply adapting ourselves to a bad situation and trying to use is as well as we can. Drinking our cup is hopeful, courageous, and self-confident way of living. It is standing in the world with head erect, solidly rooted in the knowledge of who we are, facing the reality that surrounds us and responding to it from our hearts.”
Spiritual greatness does not come from flying with the angels but rather walking through life with someone who needs our comfort and love. Living in a Christian community allows this to take place.
Encounter with Mother Theresa in Denver, Co.
Question: How do we appropriate the love of God given to us?
Cup of Salvation
Friendship – What is good about our life is that you make so many friends. What is hard about our life is that so many friends leave.
Drinking the cup of sorrow and joy is only possible when it brings us health, strength, freedom, hope, courage- new life. Nobody will drink the cup of life when it makes us sick and miserable.
How do we drink the cup of salvation?
To the bottom
Living a complete life is drinking our cup until it is empty, trusting that God will fill it with everlasting life.
The cup that Jesus speaks about is neither a symbol of victory nor a symbol of death. It is a symbol of life, filled with sorrows and joys that we can hold, lift, and drink as blessing and a way to salvation.