Bubble-ology: Three Ways to See Beyond Our Bubbles Without Bursting ThemWe all live in bubbles. The person most blinded to this fact is the one who denies it most adamantly. None of us like to have our bubbles pressed, and certainly we don’t want to see them popped. But we all need to learn to see beyond the spheres that encompass our lives. Here are three lies our bubbles tell us and how we can begin to see beyond them.
One: My bubble is the best bubble. In Christian education this comes in the form of “we’re the only ones who really know how to read the Bible or do theology or interpret the original languages.” In churches this comes in the form of “we’re the only ones who really get how to minister to people.” We often boast of having the best bubble. That’s kind of silly isn’t it?
Two: My bubble has the best bubble leaders. Any strong Christian organization, whether it be a church, college, or ministry organization, will have focused, visionary leaders at the helm. That’s generally how it works. But where you find strong leaders you often find followers who assume their leaders are the best. We assume everyone knows and reveres our leaders, because after all, we have the best bubble with the best bubble leaders. Everyone knows that.
Three: My bubble is unburstable. This lie assumes that one’s bubble is the most important. It assumes that our bubble is somehow indispensable in the work of God. What would God do without our bubble?
How can we see beyond our bubble?
First, we must recognize that we aren’t the only ones who “get it.” And we probably aren’t nearly as good as we think we are. Others have strengths and insights that we should pursue and value. In short, be humble about your bubble.
Second, we must understand that the leaders inside every bubble look disproportionally larger than they really are. We learn this when we move into a neighboring bubble only to discover they have no idea who our leaders are. We should take our leaders off the bubble pedestals we have placed them on and appreciate them for who they are, normal men and women being used by God. In other words, be humble about your bubble.
Third, we must come to terms with the fact that our bubble is just one of many God is using at this point in history. Bubbles come and go. But God is always faithful. So, be humble about your bubble.
Value the bubble you’re in. But don’t think it, or you, are better than some other bubble with its own set of strengths, weaknesses, and blind spots. Serve where you are without assuming where you are is sacred ground more than any other bubble being used for God’s purposes.
Thank God for your bubble but don’t worship it. It could pop tomorrow and God’s glory wouldn’t be diminished or tarnished one bit. If you look at an image of earth from space you’ll see our whole planet looks like a big bubble. And it’s just one tiny planet in a vast universe of bubbles that exists by and for God’s glory.
So, be humble about your bubble.