Changes:Stirrings

July 20, 2006

Much has changed in the last year, but the change really started about two years ago when my son was born. I started earnestly searching for words to describe the ideas and convictions forming in my heart and mind. Something about having a child made me want to become all that I feel I am destined to become…so that I can be a better father, a better husband. I don’t know exactly how it all works, but that’s how I felt and it propelled me. I was in Borders one day browsing the spiritual section and I felt the Holy Spirit guide me to a book called ‘The Way of a Pilgrim: And the Pilgrim Continues His Way.’ This short volume led me into the world of contemplation and Christian Mysticism. I began to try practicing stillness in my heart and the ‘Jesus Prayer’ (I am radically oversimplifying here for the sake of brevity). I found my way into Thomas Merton. I read ‘Thomas Merton: Essential Writings‘ and ‘Thoughts in Solitude‘. I then began to read N.T. Wright’s ‘New Testament and the People of God‘. I read Brian McLaren’s ‘A New Kind of Christian‘ and ‘A Generous Orthodoxy.’ I pulled out my fat theology book from my undergraduate program and started taking a closer look at the Postmodern/Modern thing and the Sacred/Secular split. I read about liberation theology and how Marx had his effect on some of the theology of South America. I read ‘Grapes of Wrath’ again. I read ‘Prophetic Imagination’ by Walter Brueggemann. I read a bunch of articles and an ebook by Eberhard Arnold the founder of the Bruderhof community. I read ‘Colossians Re-mixed: Subverting the Empire’ by Brian J. Walsh and Sylvia C. Keesmaat. I read some of the ‘targums’ or paraphrases that they published as a companion to the book. I began to read blog sites from people who are committed Christian’s and who are also active in caring for God’s creation. And I’m still reading, still processing, and am in no way ‘there’. I have just found a path in the woods, a direction I hadn’t known before and it’s just the beginning.
Basically, I began to change in very fundamental ways. It was always on it’s way though, it was like some kind of ‘catastrophe theory’ or theory of emergence…like there were things in me that were there all along but needed to reach a critical point for change to be seen on the outside. My wife and I are pretty much at the same place too, which is such a blessing because you can imagine what it would do to a marriage if the other party was still stuck driving a philosophical/theological Hummer if you know what I mean. I know that there are people that will not know what I am talking about here, but if you know, then you know. If you don’t know, then please comment or send me an email so we can talk about it.

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