I had a dream Saturday night. In the dream I was talking informally to InterVarsity board members about going to Mexico. As I spoke, I could feel something in my mouth, so I spit it out. It was a staple. I thought this was odd, wondering just how the staple had gotten there. I tried not to let it distract me and continued talking. I hadn't gotten more than another sentence or two into the conversation when I realized I had more staples in my mouth. Again, I spit out the staples and kept talking. But as I spoke, staples kept coming. As soon as I had spit all the staples out, more would follow.
When I awoke I got ready for church. I was scheduled to speak that morning and lead us in communion. I relayed my dream to my friend Paul and he said that I must be speaking about the staples ... the basics. Of course communion is a meal of first century staples - bread and wine.
I spoke that morning about the original great commission in Genesis 1 - that very first mission God gave to humans - fill the earth, subdue the earth and rule over everything that moves. And I spoke about Christ's supremacy over everything in the universe and of his suffering. I John 3:8 says, "The Son of God was revealed for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil." We are called into co-ministry with Jesus in destroying evil and lifting up all that is right and true and good and just. It is a work of subduing and ruling in all places marred by sin.
I often get more complicated than necessary when speaking or writing. Francis was known for his uncomplicated sermons. I need to remember to spit out the staples when I speak, those things that are elemental and basic - subduing evil, exalting Christ, sharing in his suffering and remembering his death and resurrection in communion.