A few weeks ago, while at church, one of my sons pointed out that the speaker on-stage was casting three shadows. Later, I explained that there were three spotlights on him from different directions — and each light was casting a shadow in-line with that light.
For my son, I went on to explain that the speaker and his shadows was one way to understand the Holy Trinity — God the Father, Jesus the Son and the Holy Spirit. The speaker was the same speaker — but depending on the relative perspective of the spotlight, different shadows were cast. In much the same way, while there is but only one God, He casts multiple shadows depending on your perspective — as the all-powerful original Creator, as a sacrificial savior for the sins of the world, or an all-knowing and ever present source of righteousness and discernment — or other perspectives, such as Healer, Redeemer, Counselor, Defender, Provider, etc. The key to remember is that all of those impressions are simply shadows of our God, based on the perspective that you are looking at Him. Of course, in the bigger picture, there can be no shadows without light, so it shouldn’t surprise anyone to find so many shadows (facets) cast by that which we call the Light of the World.
The key idea of interfaith scouting is to enable each scout to grow in their own faith – according to their own understanding of who God is. As a Chaplain (adult) or Chaplain’s Aide (CA) youth, your role is to facilitate an environment for that growth — even though some scouts may not share the same faith as the C/CA. When you, as the C/CA, are delivering the reverence aspects of your scouting program, you are like the speaker in the initial analogy. Each scout will have a different perspective, but hopefully they will hear wisdom and see opportunities to give thanks in the shadows of their understanding of God that are enabled through the reverence program that you deliver. As the C/CA, you may be a speaker, but your goal is to deliver a program that helps each boy recognize a shadow.
As always, thanks for reading.