A companionship of interest

Dear Companions and friends,

I am reminded the companionship of Jesus springs, not from obligation or requirement, but from interest.

Jesus is interested in being with me.

That creates a wide pause for me.

Somehow that feels important for me to recognize and ponder.

Offering presence and interaction from obligation and requirement sheds duty-light on relationship.  It’s a turning toward because of must or have to.  Consequently, I feel my heart turning to take ten paces away from relationship.

Interest sheds new light.  Interest says I want to.  I choose.  Interest speaks of initiative, of response.  Interest accents authenticity.  A companionship of interest softens my edges and widens my heart.  I watch my guard drop a bit more.  I find my own heart’s curiosity warmly stirred.  I even feel a lightness in my step.

“Jesus, my ever-interested Companion, your love seeps gently.  Here is my heart and hand, let us walk together today…with interest.”

So be it.

Grace and love to you in this good day,

John

Breaking bread

As a dispersed community named Selah, we intentionally use the word companion.  A companion is one with whom (“com”) I share or break bread (“pan”) with the implication being for the sake of relationship.  I really like that; I connect to that.  As the son of a baker, I find deep and extensive meaning in the association between bread and relationships.  I feel a deeper sense of meaning with breaking bread and relationships as a follower of Jesus, “who on the night he was betrayed, took bread….”  Hmmm…there is much to ponder: love, life, bread, other, welcome, provision, nourishment, sustenance, vocation…a Eucharistic life.

Recently I heard of situations and conversations that remind me how easy it is to jumble these words.  “Breaking bread for the sake of relationship” becomes the troubling “Breaking relationship for the sake of bread.”  A complete 180-degree difference in meaning to me.  How does that happen?  It’s shocking… exasperating… wounding…disheartening.  “Bread of Heaven have mercy…draw us back to Your table, Your hands, Your life, Your heart, Your love.”

I cherish the gift of companions.  I am deeply grateful for those God weaves into this whacky journey…for those who firmly and unconditionally take my hands…for those who remind me relationship matters.  In the end it likely is the only thing that does.

So be it.

Grace and love to you in this good day,

John