Thursday, October 1, 2009

Mind the Gap

Mind the Gap: An Icon for Meditation

The imagery of this icon draws on Aboriginal cave/rock art from ancient times. The Aborigines would put red dirt in their mouths and place their hands on a rock or cave wall and then spit on their hands until an outline remained of their hand. Much like graffiti is used by gangs today, the hand image would mark a territory for a certain tribe or group.

The interesting thing about this image is that it is not a drawing of a hand. The negative (pink) space forms the recognizable shape around the hand. We recognize the form of a hand in the “gap”.

The concept for meditation here is to take the original Aboriginal idea of the hand marking off territory and turn it inside out. At certain times in our lives, we aren’t as concerned with what we own and where we are, but where we’re going. I think the first prayer that pops into our minds is, “God, show me what to do and where to go.” Often a holy silence follows this prayer. At times, it can feel like there’s no response to this prayer. It seems like God could use a hearing aid. Maybe we didn’t word our prayers correctly. Maybe we’re on the wrong path and can’t even remember the way back to the path we branched off. Maybe the prayer is just us talking to ourselves.

What if we had the eyes to see the “gap”? Maybe God isn’t going to show you where to go and what to do, but maybe in your daily life you can see a void of love, peace and compassion in family and friends’ (even strangers’) lives. These are the areas that are crying out to be filled with the goodness of his kingdom. These are the shadowed areas that are in need of light. In this sense, the ability to “mind the gap” is a gift given to us—the eyes to see and the ears to hear a void that is calling out for the goodness and love of Christ. Therefore, “minding the gap” is the ability to see an area of need and acting on that need. Maybe then we can begin to see where our hand—a part of the body—fills in the void. We can then claim this small area for the kingdom.

So, if you are at a point in your expedition where you’re uncertain of which path to take—remember to “mind the gap”. It is one strategy for determining the way forward.

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