Humility and Vulnerability – Quotes from The Communal Imagination: Finding a Way to Share Life Together

by Mark Votava

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  • Having the imagination to see Christ in others

“Loving others by seeing the value and mystery in and through them is about having the imagination to see Christ in others.  This is a radical thought!  Does Christ really live in each and every one of us even if we have not ‘accepted’ Christ in our lives?  I think he does in some mysterious way that we cannot understand.  I believe there are dimensions of Christ that live in all of us.  How could they not?  We are created in his image.  Not some people but all people…”

  • The different faces of God

“The different faces of God are manifested through our relationships.  Our understanding of God is a constant evolving process throughout our entire lives.  We learn of God relationally through others in the context of everyday life together.  The face-to-face interaction between us manifest relational revelations in the parish.  What a wonderful thought that is!  I can find Christ in you just as you can find Christ in me.  Without being in relationship it is hard to understand Christ in the particulars of everyday life.  So we need to make space for one another and be generous with our time.  Being with others as a way to demonstrate love could unleash relational miracles just waiting to happen among us.”

  • We need to unlearn so many things

“We need to unlearn so many things that we have practiced for so many years that have left us disillusioned.  We need to unlearn the practice of being in a relationship with others that is void of risk and humility.”

  • A powerlessness of humility and vulnerability

“The communal imagination takes on a powerlessness of humility and vulnerability in the place it inhabits.  It listens to its place in holistic ways.  It respects the value of the people who live there…”

  • To have respect for one another

“Humility and honesty are core to our spiritual development as the body of Christ in everyday life.  They help us to get along in life, to have respect for one another.  We need to embrace them by our own choosing before life crushes us and we are left limping and bleeding from the wounds of our own making.”

  • A spirit of gratitude

“Listening is intertwined with a spirit of gratitude.  We cannot embrace life as a gift if we cannot listen to all the subsidiaries of life in and around us.  We learn to notice things that would be unnoticeable when we practice gratitude together…”

  • A life of simplicity

“What will people think if we live a life of simplicity?  We might stand out too much and become something other than the status quo.  But it is worth the risk.  When we embrace simplicity, it will shape us in ways we cannot understand.  Simplicity redefines everyday life and all our relationships.  It helps us to become integrated with the communal imagination…”

  • Financial wealth, affluence, and power

“We prefer to focus on all the things that promote financial wealth, affluence, and power, while focusing much less on what promotes true life together…”

  • Individualism, fragmentation, and loneliness

“How can we be the body of Christ together in the day-to-day of life despite the individualism, fragmentation, and loneliness we all experience at times?”

Which quote stands out to you?