Finding our own gold

Image by Dariusz Sankowski from Pixabay

One of the most meaningful things about showing my Icons of a Kintsugi Faith artwork has been the conversations that I’ve had the chance to have with others who have undergone similar faith journeys and who resonate with this particular metaphor. I’m grateful to hear of people who find this image as helpful as I have and to have conversation partners that stretch my thinking about it even farther.

At the showing last Friday, a friend of mine was sharing how the kintsugi metaphor spoke to him as he thought back on the way his faith has transformed over the years, and he made a point about the gold that has expanded my own understanding.

He pointed out that what makes the gold so valuable is that no one gives it to us; the gold is the part that we have to find on our own as we put the broken pieces back together.

I’ve been thinking about that ever since, and I think he’s right.

We tend to be given (taught) a form of faith as we are raised, but once that form breaks, no one else can give us what we need to repair it because our broken places are all so individual. The “gold” that repairs my broken places will not work for your broken places, nor will your “gold” work for me.

Every one of us needs to re-understand, re-imagine, or re-frame things in a way that uniquely addresses the exact doubts, questions, and wounds that we are facing.

We can learn from each other, of course, but each of us must find our own gold.

And that is precisely what makes that gold so valuable.

Anything we have to work for and develop ourselves will be more dear to us that something we are given. This is just as true with our transformed faith lives as it is with possessions.

I find this to be incredibly reassuring. It validates once again not only that a repaired faith is more valuable than that which is never questioned or tested, but also that the breaking of our faith is necessary for us to be able to fully claim it for ourselves. It’s just part of the growing process.

How does this idea strike you? Do you find that the most valuable parts of your repaired faith are the parts that you had to find and develop yourself as you put the pieces back together?

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2 thoughts on “Finding our own gold

  • June 4, 2013 at 10:06 am

    If the breaking of our faith is necessary, that means brokenness is not pathological, but expected. What is often defined as “abnormal” becomes “normal.” That’s a powerful (and compelling) revision!

    • June 4, 2013 at 2:31 pm

      Indeed! It’s been a big (and very helpful) re-framing for me.

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