I simply want everything I do to be an act of worship to God. ********************EVERYTHING******************** like a spider's web, intricately woven, the threads of our lives are entwined, making us who we are, where we are, at this time in history.... here's a small record of one family's journey to love God

Sunday, April 15, 2007

quotable quote

I have thought lots over the years about community, living authentic intentional community. I have even tried to practice this with varying degrees of success. I think I may have come across the reason for the "less rather than more" success. Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who we have just been reading about with the children, had this to say:

"He who is alone with his sin is utterly alone. It may be that Christians, notwithstanding corporate worship, common prayer, and all their fellowship in service, may still be left to their loneliness. The final break-through to fellowship does not occur, because, through they have fellowship with one another as believers and as devout people, they do not have fellowship as the undevout, the sinners. The pious fellowship permits noone to be a sinner. So everybody must conceal his sin from himself and from the fellowship. We dare not be sinners.....so we remain alone with our sin....The fact is that we are sinners!.....
In confession the break-through to community takes place. Sin demands to have a man by himself. It withdraws him from the community. The more isolated a person is, the more destructive will be the power of sin over him......In the darkness of the unexpressed it poisons the whole being of a person."
As a family we are fairly good at sharing our stuff with others and serving others, helping out when the need arises (though of course there's always more you could do). We don't guard much time at all for *just us*. BUT that's only a small part of community. To be really close to someone there needs to be a transparent humility. And I'm not good at that. But while the thought scares me, it also fills me with hope and anticipation and potential expectancy.


kate5kiwis said...

To be really close to someone there needs to be a transparent humility.
see, for me, there needs to be a truckload of trust. oh, i'll reveal one or two onion layers. it's just that for me, friendship is forever, and i get so burnt when someone walks away after a few years when i've shared so much of myself and they know the depths of me, you know? and what will they do with that??
so i guess i share *so much and no more* (book line, quelle surprise).. and feel my way carefully these days.
prudent, perhaps??
and i'm ever-changing.
blah blah.
swirling thoughts from moi, yet again. immortalised on the web.
[and that] thought scares me
ok, i'm off to thread necklaces.

Nikki said...

"To be really close to someone there needs to be a transparent humility"

What a wonderful and timely message Rach (even though I am not a Christian). I do agree with Kate that trust is needed, but then we also need to put a little of ourselves out there to then gain the knowledge that others are trustworthy. I am working on this with my relationships and have seen some wonderful changes in just the past few days - it feels quite liberating and very authentic (but scary too).

Rach said...

Well Kate....you're one of *the* most open friends I have! I have loved our conversations especially in the past two years. You share *so much* fullstop.
But at the same time I know what you're saying. This conversation ahs continued with someone else you kno well up here (guess who)...offline...she kindly observed that I have become more transparent over the past couple of years and she wanted me to define TRANSPARENT HUMILITY. Here's my response to her:
I think you have observed correctly! I decided I wanted a few authentic relationships and knew that they wouldn't just happen without me becoming more vulnerable. I love it and hate it at the same time. In spite of knowing it shouldn't matter what people think of me, and in spite of hating it when people suggest I've got it all together and it's easy for me....I don't actually like being so honest that people know my exact faults!!!! But I think we need to be that open. At this stage I think I am still guarded with who I will "bare my soul" to.....not sure if that is pride or wisdom, leaning more to the latter.

Your question......hmmmm not sure. Maybe that we would openly confess our sins to one another and pray for each other and in so doing be healed (to quote Scripture!). I wonder if some of my battles are because I go it alone and even though we have more people than we can cope with wanting to come for dinner etc, we don't have Bonhoeffer's real intimate community that knows us through and through.

Kate and Nikki - both your comments are echoing through there!