Sunday, June 09, 2013

The First Word

We used a slightly different creed this morning in worship. It was one where the priest asked a question:

Do you believe in God, the Father?
and the congregation responded:
We believe in God the Father.
As I recited the words my mind grabbed on to the first word of our response:
Each of the following sections began the same way:
We believe...

As I continued to confess my faith with this creedal formulation, it took on a different meaning than it usually does. I was no longer just stating what "I" as a lone congregant believed; I was no longer standing there with some individualistic stance. I was part of a group- or better, a community. I was not alone. We were holding each other up in the various levels of belief that may have been present this morning. It also meant that I didn't have to have a full certainty of belief myself. The community was there, and continues to be there, even when I am struggling. There is no such thing, some used to say, as a "lone Christian."

My mind then multi-tasked to a question that most in Alcoholics Anonymous would be familiar with:
What's the first word of the First Step?
The answer, obviously, is:
Again, it is not something the individual alcoholic, active or recovering, can do alone.  

We are in this together.

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