(Re-)Constructive Intercultural Communities–A Doxology Time Capsule

Summary and Select Quotes [2008]

This series of reposts about the Doxology international art exhibition celebrates the third anniversary of the closing of its premiere showing in Houston, Texas, October 7-November 6, 2005. The experience offered some wonderful lessons in how intercultural communities could distinctly serve as catalyzers for other missional communities, projects, and events. Doxology is part of the Parergon international network that also catalyzed WabiSabi, the Learning Trail, and Sweet Notions. The series includes these four posts:

(Re-)Constructive Intercultural Communities-A Doxology Time Capsule– Includes an introduction [2008] and preliminary story on the who and what of the international premiere of the Doxology art exhibition.

Reflections on Doxology-Part 1 – Background, why we need Doxology, decompressing as part of preparation, and choosing a “Greyhound Jesus” experience.

Global civilizations are experiencing the angst of social gridlock, and everyone is holding down their horn, as if s/he who honks loudest can magically clear the way for the culture’s traffic to again flow freely. […] To consider best directions in these “interesting” times, I believe we need an opportunity where we do not get crowded – we need somewhere less dense, with more physical and mental space. We should not be rushed – we need somewhere less intense, with a more leisurely and reflective pace. We should not feel anxious – we need somewhere less incensed, with a more open and welcoming grace. (Reflections on Doxology-Part 1)

Reflections on Doxology-Part 2 – Opportunity for experiencing the “redemptive opposite” that heals a former wound, Doxology as an event that will create links for more network events, and some provocative missional and relational lessons from Doxology.

Experiences in relationship with Jesus transcend all philosophical approaches. Jesus is available for everyone, but He goes beyond a mass Jesus that is mere populism. We are responsible for our interactions with Him, but this is more than libertarian individualism. We are transformed by His presence, but that’s more than just transactional analysis or personal recovery. Society and culture can be changed by Him through us, but this isn’t the same as classic liberalism or progressive politics. When we live out the presence of unconditional love, we  really can go beyond merely being nice, moral neighbors. (Reflections on Doxology-Part 2)

Reflections on Doxology-Part 3 – More lessons from Doxology, an exploration of differences between specific spiritual gifts and general service and how they are complementary in intercultural communities, a learner-leader paradoxical perspective on leading/following, the roles of cultural fluidity, and distinctives of the catalytic community.

It seems to me that there are two main catalysts to change. First, being traumatized – I don’t want this experience, so I’ll do something to avoid or change it. Second, being touched – I do want this experience, so I’ll do something to retain or restart it. (Reflections on Doxology-Part 3)

Introduction [2008]

It was three years ago today that the first international Doxology exhibition in Houston, Texas, came to a close. In honor of this milestone marker, I’d like to repost a series of entries from 2005 about this amazing event. These excerpts originally appeared on my Randomocities blog, which has disappeared from the surface of the internet … although they probably remain archived at some deep level.

These posts create a case study in what it means to have a community based on entrustment, mutual learning, and deferment to the perspectives and giftings of one another. In reviewing the material, I realized just how much Doxology catalyzed or clarified much of what I talk about now as the ideal for community on the new edges of emerging cultures. I’m grateful to Rob Pepper, the Doxology artist, and Aimie Littler, the Doxology curator, for welcoming me onto their team for this event.

Two notes. First, Doxology was one of the major events in the chain of happenings that birthed Parergon and the Tessera Learning Trail. (For more about this virtual “starfish” missional network, check out my category on the Training (Learning) Trail.) I’ll present it in a series of posts pretty much as they appeared originally.

Second, there are references to “Greyhound Jesus” in the text. I left these in and will pick up details of that story another time. I could have flown from California to Houston, but decided instead to take the Greyhound with the specific purpose of trying to see this experience through the eyes of Jesus. I’d just finished an intense year of work in a Christian institution, lived with multiple Christian families, and related almost entire with Christians. And, frankly, I felt I’d lost my perspective on what was happening in the world beyond our borders. So, the idea was to slow … everything … down. See life at the pace of wheels, not wings. Take periodic stops along the route to leave the bus and have a meal, observe life and talk with others. A most illuminating story, for another day.

And with that glimpse into an earlier version of a missional futuristguy, on with Doxology. Happy three-year Doxiversary Rob, Aimie, and all others who joined in that wonderful experience!

It’s time …

I woke up this morning knowing it’s time.

Time to start moving toward closure in my current job. Not because the job is beneath my dignity – no, if cleaning toilets and washing dishes and doing administrative work are what’s needed, that is honorable. No work is beneath my dignity, but my current job is below my trajectory. I have accomplished here what I set out to do, and have a growing sense that I’ve been made for something else beyond this, and it’s time to integrate what life-lessons and work skills I’ve learned here, and expect an unfolding of what is at the next level.

Time to pray and gather together the spiritual resources needed to move forward. To create a new resume based on who I have become rather than just listing where I have been.

Time for a vision trip, perhaps even a ridiculous roadtrip, to break away from the routine and the overwhelming depths of details so I can seek a fresh understanding of the big picture of what God seems to be doing in the milieus in which I serve, and adjust my trajectory accordingly.

Time for Doxology, Rob Pepper’s art exhibit in Houston, premiering the first week of October. I’ve been on the core creative team, and it’s time to meet the others I’ve connected with only virtually and see what happens.

Originally posted September 22, 2005, on futuristguy’s Randomocities.

Open Invitation to Doxology

As part of the international creative team, I’d like to invite you to come to Houston and experience …

DOXOLOGY: Drawing On Dialogue. Re~Claiming Christ.

Please join us on the Opening Night on 7 October 2005, 6 to 10pm, and for a Day of Dialogue on Saturday 8 October, 11am – 4pm.

Xnihilo Gallery
2115 Taft Street
Houston, Texas, USA.

Exhibit Dates:
7 October – 6 November 2005

Doxology is an exhibition by London-based artist Rob Pepper, assisted by an international creative team.

Doxology exhibit website: http://www.doxology.org.uk

Rob Pepper’s artistry blog: http://www.dailydrawingdiary.com

Doxology Art Exhibition 2005 Invitation
Doxology Art Exhibition 2005 Invitation

Originally posted September 28, 2005, on futuristguy’s Randomocities.