I’ve been on the bridge between Catholicism and New Age Spirituality for years now and there’s something missing. There’s a critical piece that few people are talking about.
We’ve got gratitude practices on one side, liturgy on another, and still a posture of the heart, an engagement and surrender of our spirit remains in the proverbial toolbox. Perhaps it’s the association with a more evangelical version of Christianity that causes us to shy away. Or perhaps that much power at our disposal, truly a way to step out of our pain, scares the shit out of us. Perhaps we believe that we’ll never have one-up on the darkness around us.
Instead, we prioritize pleasure, we pray, we set intention, we meditate, we create rituals, we draw oracle cards, we say the rosary, we attend mass or moon circles – different practices and forms for the same understanding: we are embodied divinity. We are bearers of Christ-light. We are light workers and change makers.
Amid this profound knowing, we are tasked with addressing darkness within and around us. Resistance, shadows, sin, trauma, excruciating pain or challenge, the devil finds us in the details. Always.
In my experience, our most powerful and underutilized tool for addressing this darkness is worship.
It’s not gratitude (exclusively). It’s not a magnification of ourselves or a basking in our own light. It isn’t dry or regimented or ritualized.
It’s wanton. It’s hot. It’s a love surge from our heart. It’s the wild meeting of surrender to and jubilant awe of the Divine, often at the exact moment when we’re feeling hopeless or terrified. It’s an acknowledgement that we’re human and our sight isn’t perfect, but the path before us is. Worship is the practice of gathering together words, music, and movement as a offering to the One who called us here. It’s like magic. It works an immediate, profound miracle, both in our spirit and our environment.
It fills our hearts.
It washes us in joy.
It turns our weakness into strength.
It turns our strength into cosmic power.
It rings us out.
It changes our perspective.
It reminds us that we have everything on our side.
It elevates us.
It evokes Divine Authority and Sovereignty.
It takes use to the edge of our comfort and discomfort.
It shifts our state.
It comforts and clarifies.
It allows us to see and feel the wide open channel between us and God.
It shakes loose everything that binds us.
It reminds us what we’re here for and what we’re capable of.
It protects us.
It turns and returns us into temples.