Friday, June 12, 2009

A Few Thoughts That've Been Knockin' 'Round My Bean

I've been munching on a few things for a week now and finally needed to write it down somewhere. Please remember that these are ruminations and not necessarily conclusions.
I have been coming across a lot of stuff from within the Christian community that has troubled me very deeply, and I have been trying to take it to the Father rather than just snap at it. There are so many blogs and threads out there that are so full of frustration and anger that it can be dangerous to head out into the blogosphere without a slicker and boots for fear of getting nailed. Admittedly I have shot some out there as well, but the cooler head I am married to always points me back to the cross and prayer, thankfully. I grew up in a Christian setting and early on I became aware of the dislike that some Christians had for each other, but for the most part these were doctrinal differences and the people involved just kept their distance. There were some watchdogs out there who had radio shows that would inform their listeners of the offending members of the body in great detail. These were the exception, though, not the rule.
Today with all the communication technology out there it has all changed so much. At the same time as I am seeing so many finding common ground and working together on the central themes of their faith, there are so many who are launching attacks at the ones who claim the same faith. Again, I must say that I am not free from this melee, as I too have launched out with my teeth bared. Again I am glad for a wife who tugs on the leash or at least tells me to pay attention to the tugs on the leash. (I'm not sure she would like either description)
Our posts and websites have become like badges that we wear and the means by which we identify each other and where we all stand. Perhaps we don't even like the image of being portrayed by what we are putting out on the web, but it does not negate the fact that it is our cyber-image. I admit I have not wondered enough about what people might think of what I am writing or thinking, but it has not caused me to be truly thoughtful enough. That being said I still find that there are certain things here which have tagged me in the eyes of many, oops, a few, let's be honest here, five followers are not a crowd. There are things on their blogs and links that have tagged them in my eyes and others as well. Not necessarily the right thing, but there it is.
These days the pressing thought for me is how does all this weirdness connect? Amidst all the blog-lashings and rhetoric it seems to me that there is a truth that is pulsing so strongly that we dare not miss it. It is a pulse that comes from the throne, and it pounds the ground flat where we stand. It pounds it flat because the whole point is to bring equity and a personal revelation of ourselves before our Father. In my mind, sometimes, it plays out like we are a bunch of unruly kids who have just had their dad come in the room. What is our reaction? My first reaction is typically to declare my innocence and say that whatever misdemeanor I am being charged with was precipitated by someone else's action. What is yours? In the end, does it matter? Or does it matter what the Father will say once all the kiddies have dropped their toys and really paid attention to what He has to say?
The ones who listen to this voice, these are the people that I am looking for in my life. I want them to help me and teach me the better way. I have found some of these people here in K-town and I am so pleased to say that I have met some in Hong Kong as well. I have seen something in them that has been able to retain the truth of the gospel and the joy of it as well. They have shown me a way that is hidden from so many eyes because it is too revealing, I think. It has revealed so much in me that I do not like, and yet has also shown me the deep desires that lie beyond the reach of those detestable things in me. They have graciously offered me a hand up out of the armchair. I hope I will take it.
If any of this is too vague I apologize. My words can come out very pointed, and I wanted to avoid that here, if possible. This was actually meant to be a pointier post at the outset, so perhaps it all ends well after all.


Wendy said...

I like what you've said here, Brad. I've been walking a similar path, I think. In learning to shut my mouth and listen to what the Father has to say for a change, I am starting to understand the greatness of Who we serve. I'm not interested in formulas or rituals or vain repetitions. It boils down to this: do we REALLY believe that what God says in His Word is true? Then live like it.

Amrita said...

Thank you for this thought provoking post brad. I 've been in that finger pointing group - exclusive rights to Christianity type, but i have learnt. Grare is everything - grace to let a person be what they are.
I am doing my devotions with Chuck Swindoll 's The Grace Awakening and he talks about it.