“... God did not give us a spirit of cowardice, but rather a spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline.” (2 Timothy 1:7)

Themes of grace and faith abound in Paul’s letters, as does the phrase “in Christ.”  And simmering (or blazing!) underneath all of it are images of Spirit - specifically the Spirit of God that has been given to us, to dwell in us - both individually and communally.

This Spirit is the game-changer, or - perhaps more accurately - the life-changer.  It is this life in the Spirit that Paul contrasts with life “in the flesh”, which Richard Rohr helpfully says might be better translated as life driven by the ego.

What we need in our world and in our country and in our local communities and in our families right now, more than anything else, is people who are tapped into the Spirit - which, as Paul reminds Timothy, is a spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline.  This Spirit is God’s gift to us... for the living of life... in a way that will enhance life - for all of creation... for the common good (see 1 Corinthians 12:7).

The Spirit is a spirit of power because it is God’s power, working in us and through us.  As such, it is power based in love, power based in service to others, power based not in force or “power over”, but power based in True Self and cooperation with.

The Spirit is a spirit of love and ushers forth things like unity between individuals and countries, forgiveness, empathy, compassion, mercy, and the willingness to die to the False Self, so that we can live out of essence and our core identity as children of God.

The Spirit is a spirit of self-discipline.  What self is being disciplined by the Spirit?  The False Self, the ego, the “self” that is about winning at all costs and being right at all costs, the self that gets so caught up in “I” and “me” that it forgets about the “we.” It is the running amok of this False Self that leads to hatred, to exclusion, to violence, to sin (separation from God, others, self, and the planet), and to death.

The Spirit that God has given us is not a spirit of cowardice.  Oh, you and I will still get scared at times, but fear is not our destination, for God is with us.  And exactly because God is with us, all things are possible.

Now is the time for all people of faith to reclaim the gift that God has given us - the gift of Spirit.

Now is the time for all people of faith to claim our power, which is the power of God working in us and through us, equipping us to do all the things that God is calling us to do - for the good of the world.

Now is the time for all people of faith to bring forth love and light and healing, by the power of Spirit.

This is transformed living.  This is high-vibe living.  This is living centered in love.  And it is the life to which God calls us.  We have been transferred, transported, transplanted - choose whatever word you prefer - from the old life of the ego... into the life of Spirit.  And once we put our hope in Christ... once we realize that death has been abolished (see 2 Timothy 1:10)... then there is no going back to the old life, which is life without God... life without Christ... life without Spirit.

We are being invited into the Divine Dance, and the music informing the dance is the music of Spirit, which is all about relationship... all about love. (See Richard Rohr’s latest book: The Divine Dance: The Trinity and Your Transformation)

Go forth today - in power and in love - by the Spirit.