Thursday, December 01, 2005

Community

Two quotes on community, one from Naomi and one from Wendy, although the one from Wendy comes via Justice so is somewhat paraphrased.

From Naomi:
"But in some cases it feels to me more like looking for new ways of doing things for the sake of it, a loss of confidence in the gospel (so other religions are seen as a source of inspiration, not a form of deception) and the power of the Spirit, an obsession with style over content to please ourselves and the intellectual in-crowd that we respect, with no real reference as to whether this glorifies ourselves or God more ... and an attitude that actually seems to communicate very little grace for those who don't 'get' it - including the very people who the gospel is supposed to be for - the outcasts, the uncool, the disabled, the poor (which every time God catches my attention I am reminded that I am part of... my spiritual poverty is embarrasing). We will 'do' things for 'them' that don't cost us too much (I'm especially talking about myself here) i.e. give money, write letters, but I don't see space for those we perceive to be these things to go and ask them to become friends with us, to be part of our communities, for the Spirit to give us the grace to be changed and challenged by their presence in our midst day to day..."

And from Wendy:
"Often when we're after community, what we are actually just after is a cool group of friends. Community isn't the goal of what we do in life, it's the fruit of what we do in life."

And a random paraphrased quote from Sayid in Lost:
"I came here with hopes, not expectations."

2 comments:

WJB said...

hey Rich.. i see where you and Justice have gone with this..
Something of the original discourse also covered our yearning or hankering for something we package and describe as 'community'. I really believe in this yearning.. i'm just not so sure we get the 'package' or 'description' quite so nailed... and so we could strive after and start craving something of our own making.. ... I think something of what i was exploring with J was my hesitation in predetermining how 'community' is to be pursued/grown... i'm cautious to 'build' something that seems more readily to emerge as gift. So i guess i find myself being proactive about the stuff of life i CAN facilitate: hospitality.. stillness... reflection... and to live with an alertness and openess to intimacy and community entering my world in previously unrecogniseable forms. [Hardly as concise as you paraphrased.. but thought you might appreciate some of the background]. WJB

richard said...

hey wjb,
Thanks for the background. I think i can be succint when I have the time to think about what i want to say, but face to face I struggle to get to the point! But you express some things that might not be obvious in my conciseness. And the cynicism in my post is not present in your explanation!

spotcha soon