Rule of Life

bee on flower What is a Rule of Life?

Pete Scazzero in his book Emotionally Healthy Spirituality defines a Rule of Life as:

a structure or rhythm for our lives that enables us to pay attention to God in everything we do. It serves our desire to abide in and experience His love all day long, not compartmentalizing our spirituality.  Our goal is to live our lives in communion with Jesus, i.e.,“to pray without ceasing.”  Awareness, attentiveness to Him in all we do is our goal.

A Rule of Life comes down to us, and was developed in, Christian monastic communities. The Rule governed and shaped their life together in and with God. It provided a framework or scaffolding to support their desire to become like Christ, and to live out of their vocation and call. Monastic communities today are still governed and guided by a Rule of Life with the best known being that of St. Benedict dating back to the 6th century.

 

The BEe Rule of Life

The BEe Rule of Life is a four-fold Christian Rule developed in the context of an academic cohort learning and growing together in the Christian spiritual life. The Rule originated from a residency where we watched the movie The Secret Life of Bees. The professor exclaimed, “I wonder if you could write a Rule of Life using the rules of the bees.” And so we did.

In the four rules of the bees, we captured four rules for Christian living: prayer, stewardship, hospitality, and missional engagement. The BEe Rule of Life reflects our desire to seek together a life lived in the freedom of Christ shaped by love and obedience, and lived for the sake of others to the glory of God.

We invite you to join us in framing, supporting and shaping your life with God using the BEe Rule.

 

The BEe Rule of Life

A four-fold Rule of Life based on The Secret Life of Bees

  1.  Don’t BE afraid (Prayer)

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.  –I John 4:18

Fear not – you are beloved. This blessed awareness is observed and lived through:

  • A commitment to personal spiritual growth through daily prayer and spiritual practices.
  • A commitment to a regular practice of silence and centering prayer as we seek to cultivate an “inward center.”

 

  1.  Don’t BE an idiot (Stewardship)

God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”  –Genesis 1:28

Idiocy is living and longing for mammon. Wisdom is found in the restoration of our groaning and wounded earth through a:

  • Discipline of simplicity and a “theology of enough” by striving to purchase only necessities and to think creatively about the use of finite resources, and by developing a lifestyle of environmental responsibility.

 

  1. Don’t Swat (Hospitality)

All the believers were together and had everything in common. Selling their possessions and goods, they gave to anyone as he had need.  –Acts 2:44

For you were called to freedom, brothers and sisters; only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for self-indulgence, but through love become slaves to one another. For the whole law is summed up in a single commandment, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” If, however, you bite and devour one another, take care that you are not consumed by one another.  –Galatians 5:13-15

The self-indulgent swats, bites and devours but the free takes, blesses, breaks and gives themselves through:

  • Regular practices of hospitality cultivating hospitality as a way of life in our homes and our worshipping communities.

 

  1. Send Love (Missional Engagement)

He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly, love tenderly, and walk humbly with your God.  –Micah 6:8

“Grace is like water – It flows downhill and pools up in the lowest places.” To send love is to identify this already present grace and actively engaging in:

  • Action for justice and peace in society
  • Missional engagement in our neighborhoods and communities
  • Pursuing a life of peace through kindness speaking the truth in love, direct communication, and practicing healthy conflict resolution.