Last night we had our first Meals and Meetings with the new younger group. 21 people including leaders and we chatted about the focus, ownership etc.
Finding Flow (the word that last group used for God) just happened but I have been thinking about how to connect with the new group, what word they may use and spirituality for a while. After meeting with Jon in Oxford he sparked the idea about finding the words that were important to them. So I gave everyone a speech bubble card, with the questions, what word is most important to you? and what word best describes your life?. Everyone completed one of the questions and then themed the answers into groups. The themes included Food (we were at the local curry house), Vishnu, Riding, and Adventure.
Coming away I set myself the task of writing a contextualised skateresque parable on one or more of the themes to use next month with the group. So here is my offering so far…..
Charlie was a biker who loved riding, and even when she had started out on a scooter loved the adventure of riding close to the edge and pushing new tricks. She was quickly developing a reputation as an excellent rider, so in order to make the most of her growing profile she decided to set up a shop locally and online brand of clothes and equipment. Her technical skills grew and meant she could design new pedals and peripheral equipment that really enhanced riding and made the whole experience better. She even invented new alloys, that could be used in frames that were lighter and stronger than anything anyone had discovered before. She made sure that everyone working for her got a fair wage and only used ethical suppliers were possible. Charlie was quickly raking it in and the money didn’t corrupt her, she gave a portion to those who needed it and kept up her ethical stance.
The thing she loved about having money was still rooted in adventure, only now she could travel to loads of places around the country and abroad. She flew around the world and rode in well know places, that were distant dreams to many. On returning from her travels she paid attention to business and things continued to grow, but she was never quite satisfied and always longed for something else.
At about the same time a man was traveling the around the area, who also had a growing reputation but not as a skater or biker, but as a Sufi – someone who was spiritually enlightened, and at peace with themselves. People who had heard his stories or spent time with him, said he had healed the sick, and helped the poor and although he too was poor was he was rich in a different way. The group that traveled around with him were known as “the adventurers”, as the Sufi set them challenges, and was always asking questions. As a group they never knew where they were going next or what they were going to have to eat the next day, but something always turned up, and anyway what better way to keep the adventure real. Even though Charlie had been on many adventures, and always pushed her riding to the next level, she always felt something was missing. Seeking out the Sufi she went to him, explained how she loved the adventure and how she had tried to live an ethical life, and asked “what must I do to join the adventurers and journey with you?”
The Sufi replied “go and sell all your possessions, your business, your bikes and inventions and give the money to the poor, then come and join us?” Charlie went away disappointed.
Any thoughts for improvement…. we don’t interpret the parables for the young people allow their interpretations to emerge through discussion.