Are You A Great Resource?
Excuse me while I continue to attempt to articulate what I mean. Something else I've been thinking of is that I need to resist the temptation to see my people or my church as a resource. This is not to mean that it isn't a resource. In fact, I think my church community is a powerful collection of unusually gifted, passionate, authentic, wise, unique individuals who can change worlds. The temptation is to see this community as a means to an end. Rather than see them as people, I see them as a way to influence their surroundings or change the world or do what I think they should do. Almost all the stuff I read to do with church falls in this category of seeing the church as a resource, and even seeing individuals as resources. It is as if I saw my wife Lisa as a "wife" or a "sex-partner" or "co-parent". It isn't that she isn't these things, but I can't look at her as those things. She is first and foremost Lisa, a person who voluntarily loves me and receives my love. And out of that reality spins the lesser realities of roles, activities and projects. I must believe that reveling in that love makes manifest the resource aspect of the love relationship. It is out of love that sex, partnership and home-life emerges. Same with the church. It is out of personal spiritual health as well as communal spiritual health that all the resources naturally emerge. And the emergence of these resources should be as delightfully spontaneous as sex is at its best or as joyfully surprising as the appearance of fruit on the vine is to the gardener. And for me, spiritual health is loving others and being loved freely and in freedom. When people look at me and see a man with a variety of gifts, talents, abilities, interests and hobbies (let's say), I reject it immediately when they look at me as a resource, as a potential, as a pool for something greater, as a means to some end. This is a false and destructive way to look at me as a person. I reject this maltreatment vehemently. Same for my church community. When people look at it as a source for something else, as a pool for some greater idea or vision, as a bank of influence to change something, I run them off like wolves because they are hungry for the taste and satisfaction that my beautiful people would supply them. The photo of the larger, older and beautiful woman is the creation of my friend Jorgen Klausen, and is from his Mexico series.