EVERY generation deconstructs… and some even reconstruct

I am reading The Long Loneliness, an autobiography of Dorothy Day. It struck me how she went through her own “awakening” in the early 1900s in much the same way I did when I was in college. I reflect on that because “deconstruction” is the “buzz word” of our time… and it’s not really at all. It may look slightly different in every generation, but it’s not something “wholly owned” by any particular generation.

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Deconstructing and Reconstructing

To be fair, I haven’t had the kind of crisis of faith I’ve watched so many others undergo. But I’ve certainly had to step back and examine honestly where I’ve been complacent — or even complicit — in enabling others who have abused their power in the name of the Lord. It’s a process in which I’m still engaged. And, day by day, exposé by exposé, it does not get any easier, because the truth is that our beliefs are tied up with the institutions — family, church, schools, communities — that gave them to us, institutions (and their people) that we love.

Theses words from Karen Swallow Prior echo my own journey pretty well. The rest of her essay is HERE.

I am but a shadow of my future self

How I live now matters. My body matters. My mind matters. It is not discarded in the future, so I can treat my current life any way I want.

Current gleanings from NT Wright’s book, Surprised by Hope:

I am but a shadow of my future self.

How I love now matters.

What we do in the present matters. It will last into God’s future. Our vocation. Our gifts. Our actions. Our care. All of it is getting us ready for our future selves.

All along the way we are building for God’s Kingdom.

Surprised By Hope: Rethinking Heaven, The Resurrection, and The Mission of  the Church: N.T. Wright: 9780061551826 - Christianbook.com

Heaven and hell isn’t the ultimate question

If I could get every American conservative Christian to read Surprised by Hope, it would be mandatory reading.

Wright forces my thinking away from what I thought was the ultimate question: Who is going to heaven or hell? (And, did God send them there or did humans choose?)

Maybe we’re asking wrong questions, and this is what stirs me reading this book again. I need to understand what the ultimate questions are, and be willing to surrender my old thinking. Maybe the question isn’t about who is going to “make heaven” and how. Maybe the question is how is God going to redeem and renew his creation through human beings and how is he going to rescue those humans themselves as part of the process but not as the point of it all.

I need my life aligned with HIS ultimate goals, not mine.

Notes on redemption

A few notes jotted down on the plan of redemption from NT Wright’s book, Surprised by Hope.

Redemption isn’t scrapping what’s there and starting from a clean slate. When I read passages talking about a “new heaven and new earth” that was the mentality I had. The old earth (where we live currently) would be burned up and something new would replace it. That isn’t redemption.

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“Build another building”

Reading in Eugene Peterson’s biography (and remembering this story from his memoir), there was the time in beginning Christ Our King church that they finally built their building. It was a glorious time. Then, people began to disappear.

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The straw man argument of “BLACK LIVES MATTER” and Marxism

It’s taking me two days to work my way through the foreword and introduction of Dennis Edwards’ new book Might from the Margins: The Gospel’s Power to Turn the Tables on Injustice. I read a paragraph, put the book down, weep and repent, then try to get through the next paragraph.

There is a paragraph to quote here from his book that answers the shameful tact white Christians are trying to use on the phrase “BLACK LIVES MATTER.”

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