In light of the last few posts trying to think through a few tensions…here is what I dreamed up (yes, I the shower again….)
Let me know what you think and shoot back….
UPDATE: I guess it would be nice of me to explain my cute pictures here. Here are my thoughts and what these images are “trying” (emphasis there!) to represent. (keep in mind, i am not completely satisfied with them yet, but they are my best shot)
I’ll use our example of the tension between our call to be in the world, but not of the world. In this sense, as Christ has been sent from God and we are sent into the world, we need to be “going in” and “coming out of” the world all in the same movement.
For us to “go into” the world and be a communal witness, we must be “out of the world” (meaning: being in continual relationship with God) at the same time. If we don’t, we will not be able to maintain the very thing that makes being in the world worth it. (you know what happens, these are the people who say “I’m going to hang out at a bar with my friends to share my faith with them” and then end up getting totally drunk along with them and therefore lose our distinctively Christian witness).
If we only go in we loose the distinctively Christian part of our message. If we only withdrawal from the world, we lose the ability to share the message (here the danger is never being in situations where we can be distinctively Christian because all our friends are other Christians).
The picture then represents that as we go into the world, we need to continually be “out of the world.” With the Spiritual Formation one, since the formation of our spirit is not a “do it yourself” type of thing and we need community to make it happen, we need to take this same principal and say “as your are drawn into the personal side of SF, you need to be drawn into community and allow yourself to be formed alongside of others and help others grow as well.
Here is the problem I have with these images so far: it separates the each of the two things. It says, you do your “in the world stuff here” and you do your “out of the world stuff there.” As if there is nothing spiritual about being the world and we need to retreat back “out of the world” to get refreshed to go back into it. I think this creates a problem…but, I don’t have a better picture in my head yet, maybe you have some suggestions…..
let me know if this doesn’t explain these images better….