Last night at Willow Creek, Jamie did a unique interview about To Write Love On Her Arms, about his own faith and spirituality, about his own struggles. As part of a new series being put on by Axis, the 20something group at Willow, the interview began (or continued, for some people) an ongoing conversation about spirituality, which includes the topics of hope, community, pain, love. Most of what Jamie said I had heard before, in blogs and in videos and through other people.
What I didn't realize were his own struggles. I guess when we put someone up on a pedestal, when someone becomes the face to represent hundreds of thousands of people, we celebritize them (yes I just made that word up), and that's probably equal to idolatry. Wrong, wrong, wrong.
Afterwards, I was able to talk to him for a few minutes, but it was nothing significant or monumental or even worth transcribing. I guess all I will say that he was friendly and somehow manages to be encouraging without saying much. But last night taught me that he is human and he's not perfect and while I see great potential in all people, I cannot expect them to be perfect.
Last night also reminded me that I'm not exempt from the need and the call to love and be loved, to know and to be known. Community is not just for the least, or for the most, or for the in betweeners. Life is all about relationships, and we should not be alone.
I need others to help me grow.
"As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another." Proverbs 27:17
I need others to build me up.
"Instead, speaking truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work." Ephesians 4:15-16
I love that - "as each part does its work." It says so much about how a community should function. The sad part is that most communities do not work the way they're meant to, because communities are full of people who are broken and who make mistakes.
"Israel, put your hope in the Lord,
for with the Lord is unfailing love
and with him is full redemption."