Monday, April 7, 2008

Four Areas of Personal Limitations

Out of the three parts of guidelines, personal limitations are the hardest to categorize because of their diverse and fluid nature. For whereas the Bible grants us a solid foundation and maturity provides building blocks, personal limitations act like the mortar filling in the cracks.

Nonetheless, a study of limitations will show that the variables group themselves into four distinct areas—four specific places that can result in the need of mortar, if you will.

The Material of Personality: Stone, brick, wood, sod, cement, adobe—all of these and more are used to construct buildings. But each carries its own set of properties and affects construction. Likewise, God created each person with their own unique package of building materials: a personality.

The Relational Location: Location, it is said, is everything. From city to jungle, desert to the ocean, mountain peak to marsh, location often dictates what kind of materials work best for construction and whether the building is a sprawling ranch or skyscraper, for example. In a similar way, God deeds us a location in our relational landscape, with the option of expansion.

The Weather of Culture: Closely related to location is its weather. Just as a desert’s dry heat doesn’t take the same toll on a building that salty ocean air will, the real world where we live and work will cause different stresses—and the need for guidelines—in our fictional worlds.

The Stress of Time: Whether a building has seen peacetime or wartime, poverty or wealth, city or rural life affects its current condition. It’s the same with people. We all carry past experiences, and those experiences, good and bad, impact our views of fiction.

Of course, this is only a snapshot of each area. To actually be able to diagnose and fill each “crack” will require a closer examination. So that’s what we’ll be looking at in the coming weeks.

No comments: