Comments for ...dispatches from the post-evangelical wilderness Mon, 20 Oct 2014 05:59:41 +0000 hourly 1 Comment on Steve Scott: Thinking Outside the Blog by Rick Ro. Mon, 20 Oct 2014 05:59:41 +0000 Bravo! Wonderful idea!

Comment on David Cornwell: Come and See by Rick Ro. Mon, 20 Oct 2014 05:50:09 +0000 Vega, thanks for your honesty. As has been pointed out, I believe everyone who frequents iMonk has at one time struggled with “Churchianity” and fundigicalism, so know you aren’t alone.

In addition to whatever everyone else has shared, I’m going to suggest you actually turn back to a little Bible reading because you’ll find it does NOT support some of the things you’ve been getting in the fundie world. I’ve been leading an adult class through 1, 2, 3 John and Jude and there are clear warnings against teachers and leaders who don’t focus on the Good News of Jesus Christ. I think if you dive back into the Bible and read with an open mind, you’ll find Jesus and God speaking AGAINST just the sort of thing that’s driving you nuts. You might find it refreshing to read a bit out of the four gospels and examine the things Jesus is FOR and the things he’s AGAINST. Read Matthew 23, especially. Then read the book of Hebrews, which is a great reminder that “It’s all about Jesus.”

Comment on David Cornwell: Come and See by Michael Bell Mon, 20 Oct 2014 03:07:31 +0000 Lovely pictures David,

You should come take some pictures up in my neck of the woods. You can see my house from this spot (if the camera was rotated 90 degrees)

Dundas Peak

Here is a poem/song I wrote a LONG time ago to celebrate the season.

The Leaves are Slowly Changing

Walking down a pathway in September
Seeing leaves starting to turn
Efflorescent colors in a forest of jade
Nestled in a field of fern.

Then the North wind starts to blow
Winter’s coming I know
And with it comes the snow
As the leaves are slowly changing

The canopy of colors is changing
Brilliance overcome by brown
Another cold breath that brings on death
And the leaves will come tumbling down.

For the North wind starts to blow
Winter’s coming I know
And with it comes the snow
As the leaves are slowly changing

The leaves have to die for renewal
So the tree might live until spring
And Jesus had to die upon a tree
So that new life to us he might bring.

And the North wind continues to blow
Winter’s coming I know
And with it comes the snow
As the leaves are slowly changing.

Comment on David Cornwell: Come and See by David Cornwell Mon, 20 Oct 2014 03:06:01 +0000 “What does that make me anyway”

Well, for one thing it sounds as if it makes you honest. I like what several people have said here, and what Ric says below about the story. Jesus never forced people into a system, but when they were honest he invited them into the story with him. Churches can often disappoint and seem to get trapped into a warped story of their own making.

Comment on David Cornwell: Come and See by Robert F Mon, 20 Oct 2014 02:44:05 +0000 Vega Magnus, Maybe it would be possible for you to look at your life, the choices you make, the motivations that drive you, the things in which you find value, the way you already live, and see if in all of this there are intimations of, or hints at, potentially ultimate or transcendent values that you could recognize and affirm as meaningful to you. If you are able to identify these, maybe it would also be possible to see if any of them correlate in some way to any of the central affirmations of Christian faith, and then gradually and inductively build a bridge from what you have discovered to be central in your own life to some foothold in the Christian traditions as they have come down to us. It would be something of a patchwork job, that probably would need a good deal of maintenance, and it would take time for you to feel your way through the thicket of uncertainties and contingencies, but that would not necessarily make it any the less meaningful or true.

Comment on David Cornwell: Come and See by Ric Mon, 20 Oct 2014 02:20:37 +0000 David,

Thank you for the beauty.

Comment on David Cornwell: Come and See by Ric Mon, 20 Oct 2014 02:17:37 +0000 Vega Magnus,
No magic answer here, just some hopeful thoughts. Rowan Williams writes (in “Tokens of Trust”, a book I am
currently reading), “Basic to everything here is the idea that Christian belief is really about knowing who and what to trust. I shall be suggesting that Christianity asks you to trust the God it talks about before it asks you to sign up to a complete system.”

It is easy to get bogged down in details and forget the over-arching story when reading the Bible. May I suggest a story-type read-through of the Gospel of Mark (short) or Gospel of John to review the life of Jesus. Ask God to speak to you as you read (yes, that is prayer). Prayer is simply talking with God (even though He already knows our needs). He likes to hear from us (I often know my son’s needs but I like to talk with him).

May God’s Love and Peace be yours in Jesus through the Holy Spirit.

Comment on David Cornwell: Come and See by Vega Magnus Mon, 20 Oct 2014 01:51:27 +0000 I can tell you now that I’d come back to Christianity, probably like I am now. What does that make me anyway, as far as labels are concerned? Frustrated borderline non-practicing, yet still believing. Backslidden heathen, I suppose. :D

Comment on David Cornwell: Come and See by Vega Magnus Mon, 20 Oct 2014 01:41:31 +0000 Unsettled was the only word to come to mind at the time, but frustrated is a bit more descriptive. I haven’t listened to a great many of said church’s sermons, but I’ve heard enough to understand the way they think and act. They’re SBC, but the pastor isn’t usually all that bad. There’s been a few Kulture War sermons, (And he contradicts himself in regards to the Kulture Wars in other sermons not focusing on them IMO.) but mostly, the worst things I can normally say about him are that his sermons are shallow and his jokes are woefully unfunny. I guess I was expecting better from him for some reason, although it wasn’t at all surprising really. I’m just sick of people falling for this obviously ludicrous crap. Like I said, I’m usually not affected by such things, but it really hit me today

Honestly, I find it fully logical and rational to admit to being unable to know anything. It’s quite frankly the truth. Claiming anything else is adding opinion into the mix, and while that obviously has its place, its a different discussion entirely. Still, like you said, the best thing is to just trust that God has everything handled. That’s the only rational thing to do, and it is the only thing that won’t make one either go insane or suffer from extreme cognitive dissonance.

Oh, and as far as my upbringing, it wasn’t nearly as fundie as what I’ve heard some other people talk about here. I read some fundie books/magazines stuff when I was ten/eleven years old or so, but that was about it, and my parents are not very fundie either, although they probably are more Baptist than any other denom. My primary exposure to fundigelical stuff came in the form of my homeschool education which used A Beka curriculum. I thought a lot of it was bogus back then, but I never really realized the extent that it was bogus until I finished high school in 2012. I was near-suicidal that summer, but I think I’ve gone over that before in detail. I’m far better now though, mostly because of this place and Christian Monist.

Thank you very much for your response. I very much appreciate it.

Comment on David Cornwell: Come and See by Dana Ames Mon, 20 Oct 2014 00:44:13 +0000 David, thank you for posting your thoughts and photos. Very insightful and lovely, as usual.

Vega, we’ve all been there; that’s why we hang out in this place for people who have been or still are in the Evangelical wilderness, and who mostly still have some sort of connection to Jesus. Whatever you do, stay honest. Hugs to you.