Today, we continue our series on a “New Way of Being” by turning our attention toward the Kairos community. All learning happens in community. In Kairos, the local community in which a student lives and works is the primary community that gives form, shape, and direction to a student’s journey of discipleship. At the same time, however, all participants are part of a global community of Jesus followers who are learning about and participating in the mission of God.
As a global community, those who are part of Kairos engage in practices that 1) help each individual grow in one’s understanding of one’s local context and the knowledge required to flourish in that context and 2) foster an awareness of how God is moving and working in the lives of others who are also a part of this community. These practices help us be one community while recognizing the value of the many smaller communities that also exist within Kairos.
Over the next several weeks, we are going to look at the practices that help us achieve these goals. They are:
- Theological Hospitality: Our practice of theological hospitality strives to welcome, appreciate, and desire the contributions of different orthodox Christian theological traditions. In this way, we encourage people to develop, understand, and share their theological convictions with epistemic humility and a sense of God’s sovereignty.
- Diversity and Unity: As a community, we are centered on the person and work of Jesus Christ and the unshakeable truth of God’s Word–we are unified around Jesus and who he calls us to be and to become. With Christ as our center, we embrace the fact that we are a “fellowship of differents.” Our practice is to highlight, rather than diminish, the diversity of our community while simultaneously calling everyone to follow Jesus.
- A Movement not an Institution: Kairos is not a monolithic institution. It is not a collection of processes, policies, and budgets. Rather it is a movement—specifically a distributed network of people seeking to practice the way of Jesus on their educational journey. In practical terms, this means the journey is more “messy and organic” than “rigid and predictable.”
- One and Many: As a collection of partners (legacy, collaborating, and operational), Kairos is comprised of many groups. It is also one community, one organization, and one team.
- Local and Global: Members of the Kairos community represent nearly 30 different countries and are located on six different continents. We are a global community, but the entire educational process is rooted in the fact that standards of excellence are contextually defined. In practice, we embrace and foster a global understanding of the Body of Christ while allowing local communities to play the lead role.
- Practicing the Way of Jesus: Most importantly, we must practice the way of Jesus. In our work, we must exhibit the fruit of the Spirit, embrace peace as a way of being (not an outcome), and proclaim the Gospel through word and deed.
Next week, we will begin by looking at what it means to practice the way of Jesus in the context of one’s educational journey.