One of the topics I’m asked to speak about most often at churches and conferences and in workshops is how God is helping churches see their neighborhoods with fresh eyes. But lately I’ve also been drawn to another aspect of this relationship. In particular, what if it is within the context of the Neighborhood that the Church itself is best seen?
The metaphor I keep coming back is one of bioluminescence, the chemical process by which organisms—fireflies, some deep-sea fish, and other creatures—emit light. (The word derives from the prefix bio-, meaning “life,” and lumen, or “light.”) I’m especially interested in bioluminescent algae and plankton, which can make waves glow, illuminate footprints in the wet sand, or appear as miles-long light trails behind ocean ships.… Read the rest