The Jazz Paradigm

My relationship with God is like the relationship in a Jazz band where, I am the improvising soloist and God is the rhythm section.

If I, the soloist, ignore what God, the rhythm section, is doing I am not going to sound good. By the same token the rhythm section does not dictate what my solo will sound like either. No matter how badly I play there is nothing the rhythm section can do to fix it. If I play exactly what the rhythm section is playing it will sound bland at best. What will sound best is when I am in tune to what the rhythm section is doing and I am able to freely and creatively express myself.

As a soloist in a Jazz band there is no requirement of obedience, and there is more than just the freedom of playing alone. There is more than freedom there is harmony.  There is the freedom of synergistically creating a sound with the rest of the band that is more beautiful than the individuals by themselves.

This is how I think our relationship with God works. Instead of the usual power paradigm of obedience or freedom, I like the paradigm of harmony or disunity.

What is your paradigm of your relationship with God?

One thought on “The Jazz Paradigm

  1. I was just “rhapsodizing” on the spiritual life as jazz with one of our interns last week. It’s an image that has been running around in my mind for the past year. Robert Gelinas wrote a book entitled “Finding the Groove: Composing a Jazz-Shaped Faith.” It’s OK but got me thinking on it since I read it and heard him speak. I like the image and there are so many ways to go with it.


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