greetings folks. i warned you my posts would be less often, and now you have proof. base camp life is one that can be busy, with few opportunities to steal away on one's own. hence, i have been here near-3 weeks and am only really getting to sit down at my computer today.
i want to give a short update on the ministry, and on myself. we are a ministry that lives and works in community. if i had to choose ONE aspect of why i love LaVida, it would be the community aspect. if i had to choose what the hardest thing about LaVida is, it would be the community aspect. i have come to believe that this is a healthy dichotomy.
this year we have 21 people living and working together, with 21 unique personalities and character-types attempting to allow Christ to knit us together into a community of ministers. this is one of the hardest things in the world - to allow enough humility to invade oneself for the betterment of the whole. personally, this is something i was super-nervous about coming back to LaVida. i have a tendency to be insecure, and in reaction to that i often will conjure in my mind the need to be noticed and appreciated. so far this summer, i have been B L E S S E D by God that humility and servanthood have taken me over (most of the time anyways), and i have been able to perform my job and be present relationally in a relatively-selfless way.
one of the things that we do at LaVida as a staff is to make a covenant with each other. it is an agreement of sorts where we as a staff enter into a commitment with and to each other, in order that we may best function together in order to do the best ministry we can do. as part of this covenant, each of us personally submits two statements: what they need in order to be part of this covenant community; and what they have to offer as part of this covenant community. i have been thinking a lot about this - particularly the need(s) part. i have had this slightly-strange conviction that i am not to consider my needs, and only consider my offerings. i have been looking to scripture and noticing that whenever jesus or paul or whomever talks about what is required of us in christian life or community, it nearly ALways only talks about what we should offer, and almost never about what we should expect out of it. and this kinda scares me - because i feel like i'm being called to REALLY lose myself this summer.
i think of eustace who turns into a dragon in the Voyage of the Dawn Treader - when he tries to peel his own scales off and doesn't go deep enough. aslan the lion dives in and tears the scales off eustace down to the depths - and reveals eustace's true self. i'm a bit leary as i can sense God leading me toward this sort of deep and potentially-painful peeling. but as much as i know it will hurt, i want it to happen - for my own good, and for the good of the community.