January 5, 2010

Keep the Covenant

In recent years, I've noticed a trend toward Rules of Life. I guess it goes to that whole "follower of Jesus v. Christian" thing combined with the new monastic thing; people don't want to live as Christians, they want to follow a "rule of life." However one goes about changing their way of living from self-centered to God-focused is really fine by me; you wanna live the Bible literally? Great. Want a rule of life as a third order Franciscan? Awesome.

But as is the case with a lot of this new, up-and-coming stuff - none of this is new. As Episcopalians, we have had rules of life in various forms over the centuries; usually surrounding the promises made at baptism. Its current incarnation, the 1979 Book of Common Prayer's Baptismal Covenant is part of the rule of life that I have subscribed to, and it is that which we pray for the strength to follow in this Sunday's Collect. May we have the strength to answer these questions.

Do you believe in God the Father?
Do you believe in Jesus Christ, the Son of God?
Do you believe in God the Holy Spirit?
Will you continue in the apostles' teaching and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in the prayers?
Will you persevere in resisting evil, and, whenever you fall into sin, repent and return to the Lord?
Will you proclaim by word and example the Good News of God in Christ?
Will you seek and serve Christ in all persons, loving your neighbor as yourself?
Will you strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being?

I do, and I will with God's help.

No comments: