Writings by N. Gordon Cosby

Stay Centered and Enjoy

There are some things we can’t hear until we know we have a problem. We hear what we are ready to hear. I am familiar with a problem which I have to work with in my own life, and I expect some of you have to work with it as well, that has been with me a good part of my life. Is there an answer to this problem, or is it just inevitable and we will have to live with it gracefully, knowing it will never go away? This problem is especially acute for good people, people who are sensitized and want to be faithful and want to make a difference in the world—especially people who have heard God’s call on their lives and want to be faithful to that call. What is the problem that most good people have? It is being in overload, too busy, weighted down, with too much on our plates. We simply cannot keep up. Read more…

Being Church NOW

There is absolutely nothing new about a new form of church. The church, the Body of Christ, is always changing. We take our form in the local and global environment of our particular period of history. We bring our society, the total global community, to God’s vision of newness, and we ask what Jesus would want his community to look like now, against this global backdrop.

During Jesus’ time he asked what his little band of followers needed to look like and be against the backdrop of Pax Romana, the clever moniker of that period of history. (Every Empire extends its deathly power in the name of peace or some other noble sounding cause, like freedom or democracy.) Jesus said to his little group, “This is how Pax Romana defines peace … and this is how the leaders of our own faith tradition define it in their institutional practices … and over here is how I’M defining it. I’ve summed it up for you in a little talk people are calling the Sermon on the Mount. Read more…

Come to the Party!

When we hear the invitation to claim our membership in God’s family, it’s like we’ve stumbled onto a Grace Party. We can hardly believe our good fortune. The sights and sounds of it are pure delight. Abundance characterizes the whole shindig. The most delectable manna is falling everywhere, and wine flows as though from an Artesian well. Everyone is eating and drinking endlessly yet not being harmed because this food and wine are not of the world but New Life. And get this: everyone’s invited! Read more…

Trust the Stream

The stream flowing through our lives is from eternity to eternity. It is artesian. It is totally adequate. Everything we need is borne by that stream. Its origin is the realm beyond, and it carries infinite resources. In this space-time realm, conditioned as we are, the stream can seem to be a trickle. It seems puny against the drugs we’re battling, against the divisions among us or the power of greed that fuels our economy.

When we’re up against all the world’s needs and lacks–the way we perceive life–the stream seems inadequate. But in fact, it is a powerful, surging, cleansing tide that purifies all it touches. It is a grace torrent. Read more…

Inexhaustible Life

Jesus breathed on his disciples and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit” (John 20:23). From that moment they were in the stream of inexhaustible life. One receives the Holy Spirit by surrendering the ego to Jesus, who is then discovered deep within. He who surrenders that narrow ego, who loses his life, is the one who will find it.

Creativity is a function of the inner imagination, not of the ego. The ego does not create out of itself, but gives form and expression to the creativity which comes from within. An ego out of touch with the inner world can never be creative, but only rigid, and can only mimic creativity. Read more…