Emergent Malaysia Meets Again …

IMG_1677_tioman_tree.jpg

To any one interested, we’re organizing a simple dinner and conversation at the Father’s House (BLC).

Date: 25 June 2005, Saturday Time: 6.30pm
(please contact me if you are interested to come)

Here’s what’s up:
apart from food and the infomal stuff, we hope to intentionally hear the stories of a couple of “2nd Generation” Christians (especially those who grew up in a so called Malaysian style Christian subculture – if you can call it that) and then move on to issues relating to this reality. It’s going to be nice because we’ll have some friends from USA visiting us that weekend. I’ve felt convicted lately that there needs to be more intentionality and coordination to open up “space” for conversations, reflections and possible directions to emerge in our context.

I’ll be away from blogging a couple of days .. so I thought I’ll leave some transition thoughts here:

I love this tree in the picture above which stood out for me in Tioman Island. And it makes me think of the Tree analogy useful to think about one’s journey of faith as well as embracing the best of our Christian heritage. I heard of how Richard Foster uses the metaphor of “streams of living water” to capture the renewing streams of the church down the ages, Robert Brow uses the Garden image. And here Brian McLaren uses a Tree Analogy which is elaborated here in A Generous Orthodoxy: Why I Am An Emergent Christian.


“The meaning of “emergent” is an essential part of the ecosystem of generous orthodoxy. A simple diagram can illustrate what we mean by emergent thinking. Think of a cross section of a tree. Each ring represents, not a replacement of the previous rings, not a rejection of them, but an embracing of them, a comprising of them, and inclusion of them in something bigger. The tree’s previous growth is integrated into, and in fact is essential to, the tree’s continuing growth and strength.

… Emergent Christians look at the world as “our Father’s world.” We stand wide-eyed, trying to take in what’s going on here, understanding it as an unfolding story, an emergent family drama, with birth, growth, struggle, maturity, death, and resurrection. We see God not as a potentate trying to keep serfs under control in the stasis of perpetual childhood, but rather as a parent inviting us to grow and mature, to become as good and beautiful and true as we can become…to emerge.

To return to our tree analogy, God is the air that surrounds the tree, the soil in which it is rooted, the sunlight and rainfall that beckon it to grow and become, season by season, ring by ring. In God we live and grow and have our being. In God’s wind we sway and our leaves dance.”

One Response to Emergent Malaysia Meets Again …

  1. Steve K. says:

    Sivin,

    Thanks for sharing that beautiful passage from McLaren. From one Emergent brother to another, I just want to say that I incredibly enjoy hearing about what God is doing in Malaysia! I especially enjoy seeing your pictures from Tioman Island — my wife and I spent our first wedding anniversary there (during a 3-month stint working with a church in Singapore back in ’96). It brings back beautiful memories of a part of God’s world that I love dearly.

    Grace and peace,
    Steve K.

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