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March 6th, 2009

You are a living fractal.

I didn’t know what that was either until a few minutes ago.  So I looked it up in Webster’s, and then online.  Click here for Wikipedia’s explanation and illustrations of fractals if you want to know more.

Actually, the explanation is rather complex and I’m a simple guy.  So here’s my non-technical explanation.  A fractal is an object or shape that looks like it’s irregular and chaotic, but it actually has a complex but intentional pattern to it.

The concept comes from William P. Young’s The Shack.  In chapter 9, the main character, Mack, goes on a stroll through a garden with Sarayu, the Holy Spirit.  One would think a garden created by God would be like a well-groomed, symmetrical English garden.  But this garden is messy – it’s “confusing, stunning, and incredibly beautiful.”

Toward the end of the chapter, Sarayu says to Mack, “This garden is your soul.  This mess is you!…It is wild and beautiful and perfectly in process.  To you it seems like a mess, but to me, I see a perfect pattern emerging and growing and alive – a living fractal.”

I find a lot of encouragement in that image today.  Chris Cerrito, one of our leaders here at Corinth, has described the church as “an embroidered rose” – beautiful on the front but a tangled mess of thread on the back.  We all have both of those “sides” to us as individuals as well.

I’m just so glad God can see the rose, the pattern, the fractal, that is me.  Aren’t you?

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