Pragmatism, Utility and Beauty

“I was inspired by Mako Fujimura’s blog entry entitled A Fragile Emanation in which he talks about the space a contemplative, or an artist, occupies in a world of pragmatism and utility. Reflection, sabbath, creativity, these things can feel unproductive and ‘extra’.” – Sara Groves

Today’s class was on the Holy Spirit. How does one teach about the Holy Spirit? About the power, impact, and importance of the Holy Spirit?

I had a few ideas, and a great article by my colleague Lois Malcolm. But then I saw this video by Sara Groves, one of my favorite Christian songwriters and singer.

And suddenly my planning went in another direction. What if I gave us – busy leadership, students, parents, friends, family members, employees – space, even an hour of class to be creative? What if we spent time dwelling in a text (Acts 2:38-47) and let our imaginations go…perhaps sketching with colored pencils or painting on canvas or assembling a mobile or writing a parable.

And guess what…we did. Some students were creative outside in the afternoon sun, some of us created in the classroom near the art supplies, some students engaged with others while creating, some enjoyed the silence. And then we shared our impromptu art with one another. No names, no judgment, just expressions of a community open to and centered around the Holy Spirit. And it was good.

Thanks class for being open to crazy ideas, to multiple ways of expressing ideas, and to journeying together in learning about God, the church, and our call to love our neighbor.

One thought on “Pragmatism, Utility and Beauty

  1. Pingback: This Week’s Links « Timothy Siburg

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