Sunday, March 20, 2011

Power and Leadership in Sacred Scripture

Let's talk about power.

No, not the power of missiles over Lybia by the UK, France, and the U.S., among other
coalition countries.

Rather, the power of the Creator.

Power is a name used for the Holy Spirit, who is described as
"dynamis" or power (Acts, 10:38-; 24:49); Romans 15:13; I Corinthians 2:5).

"You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you.
Then you will be my the very ends of the earth" (Acts 1:8).

St. Paul in Romans 8:16 depicts the process of contacting God, the inner Source:
God's Spirit and our spirit bear common witness that we are indeed "children of God."

The aim is a shared knowing and a common power, and totally initiated and given from God's side, as is vividly aflame in the Pentecost event of Acts 2: 1-13.

As with the Virgin Mary, the conception in her womb, itis "done unto us" and the most we can do is savor and relish life from such a gift of power.

The foolish only think it is their creation.

God seems to plant seeds and sow some of God, the Holy Spirit inside each of us! (Mt. 13:1-23; Jeremiah 31: 31-34; Jn 14:16 ff).

This covenant and new agreement replaces "hearts of stone with a heart of flesh" that Ezekiel
promised (36: 25-26).

This Divine Indwelling differentiates authentic Christian spirituality from all others, as Trappist Thomas Keating, and Franciscan Richard Rohr, for example, teach.

The late John Cardinal Dearden of Detroit reminded me once of the Holy Spirit as the lost or undiscovered person of the Blessed Trinity that needs development.

In our own roots and relationships, we've been looking for power in all the "wrong places and
faces" when contact is not made with the one true power, the Indwelling Spirit (Romans 8:9).

Power is good.

It is bigger, however, than domination or force.

Power is a paradox, the Scriptures show.

God used and planted and sowed God's life transforming egos in Moses and Paul.

Name the good power or settle for the bad use of power.

Consequently, avoidance of one's powerful vocation in the world as baptized believers is neglected.

What we get is negative leadership, then, that we settle for instead of the transformed new woman and new man that St. Paul speaks about often in the groaning and birthing of true power that emerges from within.

This power is very far from outside sources such as dominative power that Ken Wilbur, for example, addresses.

Knowing who one is, with Divine Indwelling of Power within diminishes one's need for outer approval, titles, roles, robes and perks that many leaders climb toward outside of self.


It can be good when humans contact their Inner Source and become living icons of the Divine Image itself (Is. 43:10). This authentic, humble and confident power is tapped and lived out of that person who takes time to tap into it.

This is the well-grounded person in God.

Only pauses and prayer and stillness contacts that Inner Dwelling within.

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