My dear friend Janet lives in southern Mexico. It is a region where the transport of goods and people still happens mostly by burro and buses, Starbucks is unheard of, and at best the Internet is intermittent. Depending on your point of view, the scenario is idyllic, imperfect or maybe inspiring. Regardless, it is assuredly different! During a recent conversation, Janet and I were brainstorming ideas. At some point, while referring to their way of life she said, “You just don’t understand.” I stopped; she was absolutely correct. It was outside my frame of reference and I didn’t understand.
Have you ever had this experience? You are conversing or exploring any given topic, thinking you understand only to discover….hmmm….not really. No doubt, you have been there – done that. Most of us can relate to not understanding.
Interestingly the movement from ‘not understanding’ to ‘understanding’ entails one small but crucial shift. The Greek word that describes this shift is metanoia, and means, “to change ones mind.” Change your mind! Seems simple yet, actually doing so, requires humility and a willingness to see things anew.
Seeing anew is part of my great passion in ministry. I’m a believer in the evolution of consciousness and particularly the evolution of understanding as it relates to our Western tradition of Christianity. Thomas Moore is a prolific author most notably known for his book, Care of the Soul. However, he is among the many wonderful scholars, teachers, and writers on the subject of emergent Christianity as seen through a 21st Century perspective. Published specifically about the life and times of the controversial rabbi Jesus of Nazareth, Writing in the Sand is an exploration from an evolutionary stance into the applicability of his teachings in today’s world.
I believe this book is amazing and well worth the time to read. My hope is it will spark great conversation with your friends as you open yourselves to “seeing anew” with respect to our understanding about Jesus and Christianity.
As for Mexico…luckily I like burros (smile).