August 2008

Haha, not really.  But my work at my church garnered some unexpected media attention.  Recently we celebrated our two-year anniversary.  A guest attended from the local paper looking to write an article about those who “quietly occupy the middle ground” in Christianity as opposed to the noisy extremists.  Well the article turned out rather well.  Apparently I play in a rock band (hey, if the paper printed it it must be true).  If you’re interested in reading an “outside” perspective on what our church is doing you can read it here.  Later!

So, as you could see here R responded and I wanted to offer some further thoughts on the matter. Thanks for responding, by the way! Those are some great thoughts.

I totally agree with your idea that no one is going to have God totally figured out in this lifetime. And I of course agree with the idea that opening up conversations with others is of utmost importance and value. That’s why I do this sort of thing, right?

After reading your second paragraph I think I’ll throw a new word out there “Exclusive”. The “inclusive” idea of God is that good people who are not Christians get “included” in life with God after death. The “exclusive” idea is more of what you are describing, I think. That the “exclusive” group are the keepers of the truth and if you don’t buy into their idea, you get “excluded” from life with God. I totally understand and agree with your point that it is attractive to people to “transcend the general mass”. And your point is made that having a view of God that allows some people (whoever they may be) to be outside or cast away from God, is a view that promotes power. Like I said in the last post there are reasons Universalism is the minority view. A major reason it is in the minority is it relinquishes all the domineering power that Christianity can (and often does) exercise over peoples lives. The religion can be exploited to be a tool to bring wealth and power to those in control. And people will always respond to that temptation. But taking up an idea that strips you any potential power and authority is not an idea ambitious people adopt.

I see that as another indicator of the truth here. If we honestly believe there is a God that IS love, then it should not be possible that the truth about God could be employed to oppress people without being corrupted.

But I will offer you this thought. Yes, the idea that people want to be a part of something bigger than themselves is very prominent; I share in that desire. But, rather than taking up with those who want power or those who want to be regarded as a “guardian of truth”, I have taken up with a different group. A group that believes God is working in this world right now. A group that believes God is connected with every life. And I (we) can be a part of that good work. We can be a part of the work of God that strives to redeem this world and make it the good place it was always meant to be. It’s an amazing idea, but certainly one that does not lend itself to putting me in any kind of position of power.

Thanks for your thoughts, that’s really good stuff! Maybe we can drag Krime over here one day and see what he thinks 🙂 Later!