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  • Writer's pictureIan Green

Imaginal Thinking

Updated: Nov 29, 2021

Imaginal Thinking

I first met Ian in October 1998, and immediately I was impacted by his view of how we as Christians have a mandate to shape the future of our world based on Kingdom principles.

He also did something no one else has done. He left the following prophetic word on my answering machine at my home:

“What you are involved with in the school is far bigger than you can imagine. What God has for the school is massive in destiny and will have a global impact.”

This was defining moment in our journey, that placed God’s Kingdom at the centre of our journey both at a local as well a global level.

Twenty years later, I get an unexpected email from Ian Green introducing us to Bruce Friesen and a great work that was unfolding in Uganda. Subsequent to this introduction we have met the leaders of the country, help launch a national think tank and presented a education transformation roadmap to the leaders of the country. Ian’s impact has significantly opened our eyes to the global impact God had for our ministry.

Over the past 20+ years God has given us insight into the transformation process itself, how do we bring heaven to earth, I call this becoming Imaginal.

Over the years, I found that very few leaders were able to engage authentically in REAL transformation. What was missing was the ability to see and create the future. The concept of Imaginal comes from biology, within the caterpillar are imaginal cells that have the ability to create the future butterfly.

In 2013, I wrote the book, Becoming Imaginal, Seeing and Creating the Future of Education. Our ability to become Imaginal leaders, those that can see and create the future is because we are created in God’s image who is Imaginal.

He saw us in Christ Jesus before the foundation of the earth.” ~ Ephesians 1:4

The Imaginal Thinking seven step process is based on faith, hope and love. To unlock the Imaginal abilities in people we need to activate the imagination to see the future. This is the difficult step because of the voices of judgment, cynicism and fear have crippled our abilities as adults to imagine the future. As people open their spirits and begin to see with their imagination, hope comes along and says it can be done. Imagination combined with hope produces faith, (“Faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things unseen” – Hebrews 11:1). Faith causes you to act, to begin creating the future you see. Love is what sustains the creation process, for creators love their creation. The creation of our vision took 15 years before we were ready to share it with the world, it was the love we had for our vision to come forth that sustained our journey.

As Christian we have been called to be salt and light of the world, which may be somewhat misleading since it may connotes a passive approach to our engagement with the world, the mere fact that we are the salt and light is good enough. Our engagement needs to be much more intentional. As we consider the seven spheres of influence that Lorne Cunningham and others have identified, we need to engage in these spheres in such a way that REAL transformation can occur, but how do you do that unless you have a methodology for transforming complex systems.

We have developed a transformational system called Imaginal Thinking. Our ability to see the future, predicated on the fact the future is already present in today in the form of strong and weak signals that enables us to create powerful scenarios of the future.

As Christians we have an obligation to not only bringing the good news of gospel of Jesus Christ, we can also be designers and creators of the future, bringing heaven to earth in virtually every societal structure. This is what we are doing in education, we have designed a new system of education that aligns to Biblical patterns and a means by which this new system can be implemented using our Imaginal ecosystem resulting in REAL transformation.

Written by Tom Rudmik

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