What in this chapter really resonated with your journey and why?
“Affection-based honesty is all the protection a group needs. Problems can be resolved with such graciousness that people either want to change or they will withdraw realizing they don’t fit in. It provides healthy boundaries as no one is forced to go beyond their freedom.”
“People can have vastly different perspectives and still respect each other while they seek wisdom that integrates both concerns instead of fighting for their own. Where we come to know his wisdom together the possibilities are limitless.” (Both quotes from page152)
I have been seeing this happen in my own life lately. As I have gotten into conversations with random people I’ve run into in my life, some have resisted my questioning of things. Some have not. There is now a small group of us living this reality. We allow each other to have thoughts and question what we have been taught to be ‘certainty.’ In showing respect and love to each other in the process we have seen such a beautiful thing unfolding…not a system or program…but growth in light and Life where we fill satisfied instead of dissatisfied (like we felt in IC.) Matthew 5:6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.
These two quotes from FC have brought to my mind two other quotes by Andre Rabe: (I may not have the exact wording but something like this…
“If we find our security in the knowledge that we are ‘right’, then we will do whatever it takes to defend the fact that we are right. (And it can get ugly!) But if we get our security from the knowledge that we are loved, then weather we are right or wrong we are still loved and we are free to explore and question.” I have seen this happen in my own life as I have grown in the knowledge of His love for me. And I have definitely seen people defending their ‘certainty.’ This is where a Christian can become ugly at times.
Another Andre Rabe quote that is pertinent here:
“God is not the god of absolute certainty, but rather He is the God of infinite possibilities.” Wayne’s quote from above reminds me of this. To think that God is controlling everything would not bring true freedom.
Thanks Wayne. The words in your book are simply solidifying what I am seeing unfolding in my own life.
Here are a few things that I liked:
- By using systems of control to protect his church, we unwittingly suck all the joy out of it.
- The church of Jesus flourishes where people respect one another with love and honor, preferring the needs of others above their own and leaving the management to the Head. It is his body and when we take control on his behalf, it is the surest sign we don’t believe in his capability to build it himself.
- we all have to resist the temptation to throw a structure around it and start monthly, quarterly, or yearly meetings.
- we’re trusting Jesus to do the mediating, the managing, and the maintaining. There’s no way our traditions and programs can ever capture that same reality.
These resonate with me because I have seen a lot of these scenario’s play out. I have seen the bad stuff get really bad, and I have seen love create some really great situations…
Whilst reading this chapter I was hit with something that I have spoken out about before in this discussion and that is an abusive cult that I was in. I don’t have to look too far in amongst some of the people I’ve known from that time to see the pain and ruin that that whole part of our lives had on all of us. These following paragraphs had so much meaning into that period. They help to correct that, that wasn’t meant to be…
Institutions need control to function; people need love to grow.
The church of Jesus flourishes where people respect one another with love and honor, preferring the needs of others above their own and leaving the management to the Head. It is his body and when we take control on his behalf, it is the surest sign we don’t believe in his capability to build it himself.
Wayne goes on to say,
Perhaps the best example of it is in my lifetime is the shepherding movement of the late '70s and early '80s.
A little later…
As in all human designed systems, control move downward and money moved upward. The local level tithed to the leader, who tithed to their leader above them and so on, essentially creating a multi level marketing system ripe for corruption. And it’s soon followed, not only in financial misuse, but also in oppressive authority. What began as wiser men trying to help others, soon became insecure leaders in forcing their authority by demanding unquestioned obedience. It grew so dark that even the organisers themselves had to repudiate their own system.
What went wrong? By serving the cry of their followers to provide leadership, they discovered once again humanities inability to resist the lusts of cash, credit, and control.
Instead of using their gifts to equip others to trust and follow him, they gave into the temptation to build their own version of it.
I know that isn’t a simple quote but I feel coupled together there is a huge resonation in my own life.
That whole explanation of “church” history in between those quotes tells me what happened to a wonderful group of young people, all with the fire of God in their hearts and trying to find their way into a growing relationship with a Loving Father were lead so astray from the reality of that reality.
Man that is freeing