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Posts Tagged ‘time’

Vision and Revelation

January 13, 2009 Leave a comment

Just a reminder – These are rough notes and subject to critique and refinement.

Revelation and Vision
By discussing stories, memory, songs, dance and art, I am both developing the roots of vision and the idea that the world we live in is an outward expression of a symbolic center. In the center of the world is an idea about what constitutes the world and the destiny/purpose of that world. No one symbolic center can fully express the depths of our lives on this planet, so symbols may change and develop over time as new depths are revealed the rooted of our purpose.

“Revealed” is the key. We do not simply make up a purpose or a vision or a history. It is a calling. We are called out of the darkness into the light. N.T. Wright suggests that conversion and calling are one and the same movement of the Spirit. The Holy Spirit penetrates our heart with the Word of God. (Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word.)

While Paul was a master of the Torah as a Pharisees, he actually “hears” the Word on the road to Damascus. At first, he doesn’t even recognize the Word until the Lord of the Word reveals Himself. This encounter, this calling is the unfolding of Paul’s conversion and faith in Jesus Christ. This faith continues to unfold and open by the Spirit of God, bringing revelation to Paul, which becomes the driving vision of his life.

Revelation might be understood as the Spirit of God unfolding the call of God in our lives through the Word of God. The Spirit of God is revealing the Word of God. As we behold Him, we are changed into His likeness. As He transforms in loving relationship, He gives us vision and purpose, a realization that like Paul we are called to reconcile the world to Christ.

Divine Revelation is the Father sending the Spirit to reveal the Son, changing us into His people, His family, His called out ones. As we meditate upon revelation and vision, we may begin to see this as part of the larger call and response between the Father and His people that spans time and space.

As Dmitrue Staniloae says, time and space give us two realms for movement toward love. All of history is the story of movement toward love. At the beginning of time, the Father’s call of love goes forth and the echo of God’s people returns that call back from the end of time. When Jesus goes to the cross and passes through death to life, He is answering the call of love from the end of time.

And now that call is being unfolded in His people and will be fully unfolded in the Bride of Christ, the New Jerusalem, the people of God who join Jesus at the Marriage feast, returning the call of Love.

Scrooge Living in Business Time

November 30, 2008 1 comment

In my last post, I did not mean to suggest that business time is bad. The problem comes when we treat business time as exclusive time. We must earn an income as a part of supporting our families, but earning an income must not be understood as the exclusive means of supporting our families.

We support our families and our friends in ways that exceed and go far beyond money. We actually spend time with them. Business time might be understood as a way to spend time on them. When people go out and buy lots of gifts, they are spending time on the ones who will receive the gifts. This is not bad. But it cannot substitute for spending time with someone.

Scrooge is a great example of someone who lives under business time. The keeping of books and earning of money becomes the exclusive time for him. All his time is occupied by measuring accounts and keeping the books. He takes the virtue of thrift to the heresy of miserliness. His preoccupation with business time has left him impoverished. He is wealthy and poor.

Sounds like many Americans.

The Crachetts reveal another time. Relational time. Bob works and lives in business time but not under it. He is not defined by the hourly wage and by the occupation. Rather, he invests his life into the family around him. While he has little money and his family may struggle, he is wealthy.

This makes me think. I drove the neighborhood of homes that were under 1500 square feet. Some of the homes were under 1000 square feet. People were in the yards laughing and playing. People were walking in the neighborhood. I was surrounded by life.

The same week I drove through a neighborhood of homes 4000 square feet and above. No one was to be seen anywhere. These big houses looked more like giant mausoleums, housing dead people.

I would suggest that business time so prevails in our culture that we think having bigger and better and more equals having successful lives. Business time can produce amazing rewards. But it cannot be exclusive.

I would suggest that some people may try to compensate for their poverty in relationships at “Christmas time” by spending time/money on friends and family. The gift buying is not wrong, but it cannot substitute for the absence of investing these relationships in other ways. Stuff does not equal relationships. And stuff can not recreate the wonder we long for.

That wonder may be found in another time: liturgical time.

Christmas Time vs Business Time

November 30, 2008 1 comment

Some “times” we think that all time is the same time. This is one of the illusions of living “under” the rule of business time. What is business time?  We may speak of the normal business “hours” to indicate a 9 to 5 workday Monday through Friday. These “hours” and “days” are designated for business. But business time extends far beyond these hours.

Living under the rule of business time becomes a way of thinking that defines each moment of our existence as either billable or non-billable time. We are either “earning” money or not “earning” money. We reduce time to pursuit of the dollar. We reduce economics to money as opposed to relationship.

In this way of understanding our time, we think that we don’t own our time while we are working for someone else. They’ve purchased that our of our time. And when we aren’t working, it is “free time.” Time that is free because we earn no money but it is also free because we are free to do what we want.

By living under this time, day after day, year after year, we attach personal value to the “business time.” The more money we earn, the more bonuses, the more successful we perform in “business time,” the greater sense of worth we have. Our personal worth is attached to performance.

If we live under business time, we may lose some of our humanness, our wonder, our capacity to love and our need to be loved. We may lose our power to choose, to define the times. We may lose our power to say, “No!”

I would suggest that we can move between times. We don’t have to live “under business time.” We can move between business time and other times such as Christmas time.

More later.

It’s Christmas Time!

November 29, 2008 Leave a comment

christmastime

All the imax chatter about the sickening sprint for sales during this Christmas season, makes me think about a song Larry Norman released many years ago called, “Christmastime.” Decrying the shopping stupor that intoxicates so many of us during this season, Norman wrote,

Santa Claus is commin’ and the kids are gettin’ greedy
It’s Christmas time
They know what’s in the story ’cause they seen it on the TV
It’s Christmas time, it’s Christmas time
It used to be the birthday of the Man who saved our necks
It’s Christmas time
Now it stands for Santa Claus they spell it with an X
It’s Christmas time, it’s Christmas time
Woah it’s Christmas time
Oh woah oh baby
Oh woah oh woah it’s Christmas time
Oh yeah baby
I said Yeah
Yeah
Yeah… You go into the forest and you cut down all the trees
It’s Christmas time
I know you got a power saw but who plants the seeds?
It’s Christmas time, it’s Christmas time
I gotta buy a present can’t remember who it’s for
It’s Christmas time
I ‘ll see you in a hour when I get back from the store
It’s Christmas time, it’s Christmas time

lyrics from lyricmania.

I would suggest that we don’t know how to celebrate deep enough and never really enter into Christmas “time.” We remain in our business time but are starved for the wonder of Christmas “time.” Oddly enough, you can’t serve both.

If you want to know what I mean by Christmas “time” keep reading here during the next few weeks.

Crossing Time and Space Through Story

July 21, 2008 Leave a comment

Storytelling allows me to moves across time and space. The grand story provides a foundation for movement across all stories. When I move through stories, I am entering the world of other people. I am entering their time (memories and vision) and their space (body and place).

I can move through stories (worlds) on multiple pivots points. Think of the elements of story: setting, dialogue, character, plot, symbols, mood, and pace. I can connect stories at one or multiple points. So I might move back through in the characters of stories. Take the king or ruler. I can read and experience the many variations of rulers across time through stories written in and about differing time periods.

The rulers make differing decisions, the rulers may be good or evil, the rulers may be young or old. In spite of their differences, they play the same characters. They are rulers because they rule. So I watch and experience their rule in different settings, times, and world. As I watch and listen and experience their worlds, I might see glimpses of my own world. I might gain insight into the rulers of my world or my own ruling decisions.

I can start with setting working our from my home to a variety of domestic dwellings revealed in stories from mud huts to castles. Each setting creates a place where relationships happen. So each setting speaks something of how place influences relationship and how relationships define space.

I might look at symbolic colors of red or white or black. Or I might consider the changing pace in stories from my world to ancient worlds. I might see how the same plot is replayed and repeated in different ages.

Each element of a story can be thought of like a jazz standard. Just as Louis Armstrong, Miles Davis and Herbie Hancock might play the same song or standard, they’ll interpret it in light of their own world. Their perspective will highlight unique nuances of the song and capture different experiences based on the time and place of the recording. Thus stories and story elements might be like jazz standards that are reworked in various ways across time and space. If I choose to explore these shifting expressions, I will take an element and watch how it is reworked in various times and places.

So I might learn to listen to other stories. First, I might learn to listen to the stories of the people around me, paying attention to all the elements. Then I might also pay attention or listen to the stories of my culture, other cultures and other times. Each of these elements and stories will shine new light into my own story.

Then I might work through these many stories to the grand story. The Christian story provides a fundamental influence on people born in the Western world. Even though many people see this narrative as a shackle from which they desire to be free, they still require a story to make sense of the world. The West has been so deeply shaped by this story, it is difficult to shake free from it.

They may curse the story but even their curses comes from the power of this narrative which affirms the individual human as distinct (with the ability to curse and bless). As opposed to narratives which deny our individuality and see that individuality as an illusion. In those worldviews, the curse that I utter is still an illusion of my own independence.

So for my reflections, I’ll try to consciously think and talk about how the Christian story provides a narrative that connects all stories. Back to my example of stories about rulers: I can work through all the various stories on leaders and kings and managers and people who rule. Then I can encounter the Biblical narrative.

In this narrative, Jesus is presented is the “ideal ruler” against the backdrop of other rulers such as Herod and Caesar. The sharp contrast of Jesus with other kings in his story and the stories throughout Scripture raises challenging questions about what it means to rule and how a ruler behaves.

I picked an obvious archetype of ruler. But how do I deal with lawyer or plumber or other character? What about mom or sister or friend? If I move beyond characters can I root setting or symbol or dialogue in a grand story? The particularities can be challenging and may not be as obvious as ruler.

But if G.K. Chesterton is correct and Jesus is the story in which all stories intersect, then I can work through each particular story element and find the roots in His story. This may require a deeper understanding of how I encounter Jesus in the story of Scripture. I think most people start with the gospels and try to think of the events of his life.

But actually the Emmaus road story (Luke 24:13-35) indicates that all of Scripture is witnessing to the story of Jesus. So I need eyes to learn how to read this grand narrative and begin to hear and see how His story is unfolded in the midst of stories about Abraham, Moses, David and so on. This is not something I do overnight, but rather I gradually work through this grand narrative, learning slowly and by God’s grace how to see the points of intersection and how to see the light of grace shining deep into the recess of my own story that is filled with pain, struggle, darkness and loss.

Patterns, Progress, and Lifespans

June 19, 2008 Leave a comment

I’ve written before about the idea of how each of our lives represents a span of time that we called a Lifetime or Lifespan. In one sense, each of us live within a particular time because we have particular memories and particular visions. We move in time between memory and vision. This particular movement between memory and vision unfolds in our language, our responses, our actions in the world around us.

If I remember being bit by dogs in the past and I expect that encounters with dogs in the future could result in being bit, then I will have specific responses to the dog in front of me right now that will be different from someone with a differnt timespan of memory and vision in relation to dogs.

But our lifetime is not determined in this sense because surprises can happen. One friend told me that she had a fear of dogs her whole life. While visiting family, she was sitting a bed when the family dog slipped and started to fall from the bed. She instantly responded by catching the dog to break the fall. This act changed her response to dogs. In a single action, she changed and became someone else.

We live within one time, but some-times we can step out of time and change, entering a new time (new memory and vision).

With that said, I do think that there are patterns common to all lifetimes (or most lifetimes). James Jordan suggests that we move in patterns between faith, hope and love. This is a pattern that also appears in Scripture as the movement between Priest, King and Prophet. While I will touch of some of his ideas in the posts about this theme, I will not attempt to develop his idea completely, but will explore some aspects. If you want to see his full thoughts, read From Bread to Wine (see the catalog on Biblical Horizons).

Now to consider patterns think of childhood. There are phases of dependence and trust, growth and exploration, and times of expressing self and defining relation. These phases may not be as clear cut as I lay out here but they do happen and there is a bit of repitition at different ages.

The newborn is totally dependent for clothing, food, care and so on. This is a phase of absolute dependence; an initial phase of trust or faith. While a child is dependent through adulthood, there are some points of particular dependence such as when their first born. Another time of intense dependence is when they first do away to school.

They leave home and now must trust a figure outside the home to function as a surrogate parent. Just of their dependence on the parent helped shaped their identity, this dependence on the surrogate (such as Kindergarten teacher) will also impact their identity. Rules of the classroom and rules in grammar, math and so on become foundational for them to make sense of this new world.

Newborns grow into a toddler phase characterized by growth and exploration. They discover their fingers and toes. They move from sitting/rocking to crawling to walking. They grow from making noises to forming initial words. Some early development is taking place in their body and mind. They are learning and a very early form of reasoning is displayed.

This season of growth and exploration will happen again around 9-14. This is when they shift from being a boy to being a young man and from a girl to a young lady. They become aware of differences and constrasts between family, the sexes, the neighbors and us, the kids at school and our family. Using their developing reasoning skills, they are more willing to argue with other kids (and with parents).

Another phase can be seen in the 3-4 year old as they tell mommy again and again how much they love her. They may become clingy to one or both parents. They start asking “why” hundreds of times a day (which prepares them for the rules phase).

When a child moves into teenage years, the “why” question becomes more pronounced. Their asking harder questions and getting ready to do more reasoning, but their also extremely emotional. They may begin flirt with the opposite sex. They move between highs and lows with sudden emotional outburts. They’ve experienced similar passions at a younger age but these were directed to parents. Now their emotions are directed outwards to friends and potential loves (as well as enemies).

While the phases may not be so clear cut, there repeated seasons where children are totally dependent, form identities in relation to authority figures (and eventually in relation to peers), experience dramatic growth and development, ask questions, shift from thinking to feeling, learn new rules, apply old rules in new ways, break rules. And so on.

The child is growing and repeating patterns again and again–developing their lifetime (memory and vision) which will shape their ongoing formation in adult years. At the same time, there are always possiblities along the way for dramatic invasions from outside their memory and vision that will shape their lifetime for both good and bad.

These pattern of rules, relationships, reason, emotions, growth and so on occur over and over throughout our lives. So in one sense, our lifetime is similar to the circular motion on a clock. Repeating hour after hour. At the same time, unexpected events can alter the cycle or challenge us to step outside one cycle and enter a new rhthym. An retired widower may suddenly decide to learn the the blues and travel around the world.

We are free to change within our lifetime. This freedom to step out of one cycle and into another is part of what makes us human. And yet, even as we step between cycles, we will still face internal and external periods focused on identity, relationships, rules, growth, questioning, stories, and so on.

Time as Memory and Vision

May 1, 2008 2 comments

Now to continue with the idea of time in our life.

Each person is born on a specific day at a specific time. Additionally, each person has a unique body and lives in the same body until the day she dies. Thus each of us lives in a particular space and a particular time.

When a person dies, we will speak of his lifetime: life-time. No two people share the same lifetime. So we all have a unique time associated with our life.

Now think of a child. The child experiences the world around him through his specific body. At the earliest stages, he’ll experience the care and nurture from his mother, the voice of his mother, the smell of his mother and so on. As his brain develops, he begins to make sense of the world through these experiences.

These experiences become the foundation of memories. By looking backward, we form certain expectations of the present and future. At her first birthday, a child has no expectation or understanding of what is happening. Each year the ritual is repeated. Additionally, the child experiences a repetition of the birthday ritual at birthday’s from other member’s of the family.

Over the years, the child begins to expect a birthday party, a cake, presents and all the other associations of the birthday. In fact, the child will look to the future at an upcoming birthday, anticipating the festivities to come. As the child looks back to past birthdays and forward to a future birthday, the child will ask her parents for a gift. The child will ask her parents for a party. The child may say things like, “I’m four-and-a-half.”

By looking back and looking forward, the child responds by speaking and acting in certain ways. Thus time (the child’s time that includes both past and future) gives birth to thoughts and actions in space. Another way we might speak of the past and future for a child or any specific person is to speak of memory (past) and vision (future).

All of us move between memory and vision. Memory and vision defines the time of each particular person. As we look back and look forward, we make sense of the world. Because we each have a different set of experiences and expectations, we make sense of the world in different ways, or we live in different times.

Compare a young man and an older man. The young man has fewer memories, fewer disappointments, fewer failures. He is more flexible both in mind and body. In this sense, the young man has more energy for ideas and action. Thus he is an idealist. He lives in “ideal times.”

The older man has known crisis. He has watched dreams die and expectations go awry. He has seen friends make wrong choices or he himself has made poor choices. While he may understand the world better than the young man and he may have learned great lessons from his mistakes, he is not as flexible as the young (not in mind or body). He lives in “experienced times.”

The young man and the older man may have difficulty communicating or even speaking the same language (using the same words to mean different things). The young man may say, “I am always going to have passion and I am not ever going to compromise.” The older man may say, “You simply don’t understand the ways of the world.” They are living in different times.

Now I multiply this small picture across a community, a nation, a world of people. People live in different times. As a result, they understand and act on symbols (words and more) in different ways. While each person lives in a unique time, they may share enough similarities with other people to be put into a group.

We might speak of the group in terms of nationality (American, German, Chinese) or we might group by economic class (poor, middle class, rich). Each grouping implies a degree of shared times that allows people within the group to communicate and cooperate in specific ways.

More later.

What’s the Time on Your Life Clock?

When you need to know the time, you might look at your life instead of your wrist. We’ve become so conditioned by the wristwatch, that we’ve really lost our ability to know the time. We may be able to recite the hour of the day, but I’m afraid we may have know idea how to read the time and the times.

Yesterday, I considered how a calendar might begin to help us understand time and the movement of people through time. Today I want to specifically consider time in the life of a person. Our life has its own time. Thus we can speak of a person’s lifetime. We have a specific birth time and will have a specific death time. Between those two points in time, we live through many different sets of time.

Instead of simply thinking of seconds, minutes and hours, we might think of other ways to define time. For instance, we mark each day as a specific measurement of time, and then we associate meaning with specific days. People will say things like, “I hate Mondays.” Or “Friday is finally here.” We group Friday afternoon, Saturday and Sunday together and define that unit of time as the weekend.

We mark the passing of years. Each year we celebrate with a birthday. In one sense, every time we pass a time marker the world around us changes. We change our words, our clothes, and even our relations. At a basic level, we change our words. I am 43, but after my next birthday I’ll refer to myself as 44. So we measure changes in years. Then again, decades are even more significant. So people will often reserve special celebrations for the changing of decades such as 20, 30, 40, 50 and so on.

But not all are units of time are equal sets (like the minute and hour of the watch). We look at a person’s life and may divide by time segments such as infancy, childhood, adolescence, teenager, young adult, middle age, and so on. Each of these time units (or epochs) might be used to explain other epochs. For example, the epoch of childhood might be used to explain the teenage period. We may explain a teenager’s poor or unusual behavior by pointing back to their childhood. We looking back to an earlier epoch to understand a current epoch.

But we can also look forward to a future epoch to help understand the present. A teenager might look to the future and dream of being a doctor as an adult. The future epoch will give the teenager direction for study and preparation in the present.

While I’ve used years and development terms (adolescence, teenager, etc) as time designations, there are many more in each person’s life. We might measure life from job to job. Or before marriage and after marriage. All these ways of thinking about world during our lives, provide filters for meaning. Our times help us to define or find meaning in the world. Now there is another way to think about time within a person’s life: memory and vision.

From Clocks to Calendars

April 30, 2008 2 comments

If I ask a person, “What time is it?” Normally they will respond with an answer that includes hour and minutes such as, “It’s 5:45.” The clock and the watch have trained us to think of time in terms of minutes and hours. While we don’t normally count time in terms of the second hand, our watches usually provide us with the ability to count seconds as well.

While this is one way of thinking about time, it has actually limited our field of sight by reducing the vast ways we should think about time. We think we are managing minute blocks of time, so we scribble on our calendars and PDAs and Blackberrys, 30 minute meetings, 60 minutes meetings, and so on. But the idea of time management is much more ancient than trying to follow a hectic schedule that may or may not have any lasting sginificance.

A better way to think about time and time management might be in terms of calendar instead of clock. Eugen Rosenstock-Huessy suggested that if you want to understand people from a given point in history, you should look at their calendars. What days and weeks do they observe as significant?

Calendars teach us that for over several millenia, people have counted time in terms of significant points in time. They associated meaning with specific points in time. For example, two of the oldest points in time that people have counted are the spring and fall equinox. Planting and harvest are activities that took place during these events, but the activity is hinged with significance beyond simple survival.

The spring and fall equinox were “times” to exercise tribal memory. Consider Halloween. This ancient holiday has had different names and manifestations, but it has consistently remained a time for remembering. The idea of dressing as skeletons or ghouls would be a connection with some Celtic traditions of looking back to ancestors or spirits that have not freely entered into rest.

So the calendar provides a way of remembering. In the church, the liturgical calendar is rooted in memory. Not simply memory as thoughts but memory as action. We remember the birth of Christ by certain activities. We mark the memory. We build a monument in time: a memorial. This memorial serves as a reminder for who we are and the community that helps to define us.

As long as we are limited by minutes and hours, we do not have the ability to really see time: past and future. This infatuation with measuring and controlling small bits of time, limits our ability to really understand who we are, where we are and what we are supposed to do. As a result, we become slaves to the urgency of the moment. And in one sense, time then becomes captive to space.

We search for significance in timeless space such as nicer cars, bigger houses, more stuff. Without the weightiness of time, this stuff is empty. Simply look at the latest foible of some rich and foolish to see the emptiness of lots of stuff with no weighty significance of time.

A healthier understanding of time moves between the past and the future through memorials. By looking back and forth, we might begin to see larger epochs of time. We might think in terms of years, decades and even centuries. Our grasp of time and our call to act in time will move us beyond actions that benefit us in this moment, this hour, this minute. Rather, we learn to act in ways that anticipate, and create a future that extends far beyond us.

Obviously, this way of thinking and acting is not appealing if I need immediate satisfaction. If I am in fact a slave of space, and I want my moment in the sun now, I will not see any value in acting in ways that benefit the future or in some ways complete the past.

But if I want to act and speak in ways that are rooted in the weightiness of time, I must rethink the way I approach time and the way I respond. To help us better understand where we are and what we are to do, we can draw from Eugen Rosenstock-Huessy’s cross of reality and think in terms of moving in four directions: past, future, inner and outward. These four directions encompass time and space.

To think more about the relation of time and human, I will write the next post on life-time.

Relationships, Houses and the Tabernacle

April 29, 2008 Leave a comment

doug and kelly house

We can begin to think more about how space and time intersect by considering the Tabernacle.

There are three areas related to the tabernacle: outer court, Holy Place, and Holy of Holies. The Israelites can come to the outer court, but only priests can enter the Holy Place. And only the High Priest can enter the Holy of Holies at specific times and according to specific rules. The Holy Place is veiled from the eyes of those who are not priests, and the Holy of Holies is veiled from everyone except the High Priest.

Now consider a house. We build walls around a set a relationships we call family. Family members can freely come and go from the house, but the house may be locked to those outside the family. We put a solid veil or a door between the outside world and the inhabitants of the home.

The door represents more than a physical barrier. The relationships within the home are veiled to the outside world. Within the sacredness of family, there are guarded memories, conversations, and stories. The space of the house represents a sacred placed for shared relationships or shared time. Inviting someone to pass through the outer veil is an honor. By inviting them into our space, we are inviting them at one level into our shared time.

The dinner table might be likened to the Holy Place. At the dinner table, we eat (break bread) and drink (pour wine). The bread and the wine (or whatever the meal) becomes a point of contact for sharing space and time together.

As we eat and drink in the presence of one another, we begin to discard veils. If wine is present, it can help accentuate the removing of veils/inhibitions. As we let down our guard (our veils), we begin to speak.

Around the meal, we tell stories. We share the highlights of our day. We recall memories. We dream together. We think out loud. The dinner table is place of the gathered tribe where people (both in the ancient past and in our current world), learn identity, connect to a family, learn proper social behavior, learn patterns and rituals that will shape their memories and dreams for the rest of their lives.

The dinner table extends beyond the family (tribe) and is a place of forming treaties between tribes. Thus the dinner table has been a place for negotiating great decisions like marriage, peace, business and friendship.

Beyond the dinner table, there is one other room that bears an even weightier sense of the sacred: the bedroom. The bedroom is an exclusive place of protection for only the husband and the wife. Behind the veil of the bedroom door, the couple removes all veils (both physical and emotional).

The physical veil is easy to remove and comes off on the wedding night. But the emotional veils guard such precious secrets that they take years to removed. And unfortunately, some couples never develop the trust of vulnerability required to begin remove these inner emotional veils.

Removing a veil leaves a person naked and completely vulnerable. Isaiah experiences the intensity of such exposure in his vision of the Holy God. A similar (though much less invasive) exposure happens between a husband and a wife.

This removing of veils binds memories and dreams together in a way that makes the couple both physically and emotionally one. The bedroom can be a great gift of healing and transformation when properly guarded, allowing for deep vulnerability, deep trust and deep shared time.

The husband and wife relationship gives a glimpse of the relation between the person and God. By the Spirit (through Jesus), the veils are removed one-by-one as we grow from glory-to-glory. Eventually we will truly behold Him with unveiled face—and we will be changed, glorified in the light of His love.

Without the Spirit’s grace of gently unveiling, exposing and transforming, the glory of the unveiled soul would be painful and terrifying much like Isaiah’s encounter and the encounter of the Israelites on the side of Mt. Sinai. This unveiling exposes our weaknesses, our sins, our absolute need for mercy and grace. Without mercy and grace, it is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of a living God.

Thus the gift of a home begins to help us understand how space becomes a place which serves time: the sharing of memories and dreams and the essential mystery that forms us as unique persons.

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