The faith of the New Church is a faith that is meant to be lived. Religious ideas all by themselves don’t accomplish anything; they become valuable when they’re fused with a desire to live the way that God teaches us to live. In the New Church we believe that God wants us to live lives of love, wisdom, and use. Love is the desire to share what is good with people; wisdom is the understanding that makes love possible; and use is love expressed in action, or love brought to life.
Ideally, we’ll bring love to life in everything we do—not just in isolated acts of service. If our daily work is an expression of love, or of the desire to help people, then our daily work is part of a life of use. If our home life is filled with love, then our home life is part of a life of use.
At Sunrise Chapel, everyone is encouraged to make their entire life a life of use, and to carry the spirit of service with them wherever they go. We never know when we’ll be called on to be there for someone; we never know when we’ll be asked to serve in the most profound ways. And we never get to see all the ripple effects of a simple commitment to being useful in all the little moments of our lives.
The Spirit of Service
One powerful thing to remember is that often the most valuable service opportunities are the unscripted ones. When we’re willing to connect with people and listen to them, we open up the possibility of discovering ways in which we can help them. The ability to be present with people, and rise to the occasion when a need is discovered, is the true spirit of service.