I'm thinking about community after yesterday's sermon. (Nice job Jeff.) My thoughts combine with my reading on narrative leadership (Congregations Magazine by Alban) and how important are both the stories we tell and the way we teach others to make stories of their life in community. People make meaning of their lives by interpreting events in terms of stories. They also place themselves into the community by understanding the community's stories and placing themselves within them.
It reminds me of a Star Trek, Next Generation, where Capt. Picard meets someone who speaks ONLY in story and its analogy. All life's experiences are described in terms of events that have happened in history because their meaning is known. Therefore, meaning of a current event or crisis can be understood in relation to the story that is already part of one's life. Many say this is the old way of being; living in meta-narratives which are now gone. Perhaps it is in mini-narratives that we need to focus our attention.
So how do we invite their (congregation) stories in that period of worship designated for the preacher's words? As I look towards next week and the wonderful eye-opening story of Emmaus, I will endeavor to catch the congregation up into the mystery of Jesus' resurrection appearance on the road AND invite them to imagine telling the stories of their life transformations in a new and creative ways.
My challenge is to make this happen. And such a busy week ahead with four nights out, ah well.