We live in a partial world where nothing appears complete – transitions abound and seemingly have no end – I think this might be a sign of God being there. If so, the world becomes a “theater of possibilities” for finding and loving God and each other.
Friday, January 30, 2015
Thursday, January 29, 2015
The emerging God is the evolving God. His manifestations unfold in human understanding through time, marking territory along the way. This is highly noticeable in the biblical text, which can be referred to as an evolving story, where the Creator speaks, the Crucified and Risen One takes center stage, and then the Spirit signs us towards a destiny with God, which will someday be realized.
Wednesday, January 28, 2015
Pride is considered by some Christians as the deadliest of sins. While this may be the case, the scenario needs to be nuanced. Perhaps, it would be better to consider inappropriate pride and appropriate pride? Here’s what I mean. Appropriate pride might be an expression of one accomplishing something and doing it well, whereas inappropriate pride would be making an idol of oneself and one’s achievements. No reason that I can see that God would have a problem with the former, while surely the latter would create difficulties. But that’s just the point. There is a former and a latter and the two can’t be fused into one. Pride, therefore, is not always deadly. A sense of appropriate pride, by contrast, has a valuable place in Christian thought and spirituality.
Monday, January 26, 2015
The symbolic can be seen as that which evokes imaginative thought and carries meaning that stretches beyond one’s total comprehension. In a sense, the symbol transcends what can be known. The biblical text, for example, is full of symbols (God is a rock, etc). As an augmentation of reality, symbols carry the potential to expand the interpretative space and give rise to an outpouring of meaning. Therefore, symbols form the means to encode and promote explorative thought and thereby, open up a realm of creative possibilities for reflection. It is important to note that even though symbols have extensive meaning, they still operate within a given domain. Without such constraints, the symbol would be incomprehensible. What this means practically is that the interpretation and understanding of symbols revolves around their connections to realities in the living world. However, this measure of what I call “hermeneutical realism,” does not underplay the reflective potency of the symbolic.
Friday, January 23, 2015
To struggle in life is a positive. Wrestling with our minds and bodies that are thrashing about for direction is tough going. Being human is complex. Likewise, belief in God is hard, not always easy and flowing smoothly. Biological and spiritual truths it seems have a lot in common.
Thursday, January 22, 2015
Many self-help books portray things in an optimistic one-sided fashion that leaves us with half-truths. Resilience, for example, is not merely the capacity to overcome adversity – positive – but also can be the ability to embrace a stubborn attitude about changing destructive patterns in our lives – negative.
Wednesday, January 21, 2015
The younger son’s motivations in the parable of LK 15:11-24 for returning home are actually left open by the narrator – starving? guilty conscience? Surely, what’s even more important though, than the question of what’s in the heart of the younger son, is the extravagance of the father in running to meet him and then not letting him finish his calculated response or real confession, before preparing a celebration in gratitude of his return. This is not a lesson in better parenting, but a story of the audacity and excess of the father, where retribution and condemnation are vilified. Not sure there are many waiting and welcoming fathers like this. Who will join in the festivities and come to the party?
Monday, January 19, 2015
Charity, grace, and love combined with a hunger for truth, should exemplify the lives of Christians. Today is the day that now more than ever calls for a growing and observable reciprocity between what we say and do. As empty lives, broken hearts, and shattered idols have accelerated dramatically in our times, a credible testimony to Christ becomes all the more important and essential to a world that is looking for hope in the midst of despair.
Friday, January 16, 2015
Severing a meaningful connection between language and reality is problematic. Language just can’t go it alone.
Thursday, January 15, 2015
Authenticity as a quality or way of being. I was just reading that authenticity is not something that we have or don’t have. It’s a practice or choice. I’m not convinced this author really gets it. For authenticity to be authentic, someone or something has to come before ME. That is, authenticity has to be given, and therefore it is something we can have or not have, not merely a practice or a choice.
Wednesday, January 14, 2015
Boundaries and accountability might call for suspicion, but it depends on who’s setting them and requiring it. If these are put in place by a trustworthy other, they can rightfully function as at least a safeguard against naivety and making it up as we go along. But it would appear to me that nowadays many take such credibility checks like this far too personally. They see both bounders and accounters as performing treacherous acts of betrayal against them. This, I believe, is largely due to how they look at life – hyper subjectively, which promotes pretending and not facing reality. There is little recognition here of a “loving objectivity,” or considering a justifiable “way” that they might need to be challenged to perceive differently. And when you’re one that “don’t fit in” to their perceptive orientation of the unbounded and unaccountable, it means you’re negative and therefore untrustworthy, even perhaps a heretic. I think I’ll opt for being one of those any day, instead of caving to the unreal.
Monday, January 12, 2015
A voluntary decentering of oneself is not an act of self-violence, but an appropriate response to God. Through this life long task and vocation, one affirms, and not negates, one’s creaturely and salvific status, which indeed is a high calling.
Saturday, January 10, 2015
Friday, January 9, 2015
We’re not doomed to idolatry. God was well aware of the risks in creating human beings and a certain kind of world, but went ahead anyway.
Thursday, January 8, 2015
Recognizing that we are God’s creatures and therefore not God, is a life long task and joy.
Wednesday, January 7, 2015
The New Sensibility
This is my faith, these are my prayers, that is my reading of the biblical text, and god is speaking to ME through them all. If you challenge or question any of this, you’re not being sensitive to my needs and my points of view. You must treat me according to my feelings and if you don’t you’re beating me up.
Monday, January 5, 2015
In spite of the malfunction of ourselves and the world around us, most of us get used to “living” and even “loving” life. Because of the people, experiences, tastes, smells, light, and so forth, that bring about a formidable plus for embrace – facing death can become an undesirable challenge.
Thursday, January 1, 2015
Humans have a wonderful capacity for self-examination. In spite of this being utterly ignored by some or hyper-embraced by others, it remains a marvel. Why? Well, it should affirm to us that we’re not merely a product of our cultural surroundings, nor are we entirely determined by our environment. In contrast, we are co-creators with the Creator and this has huge implications for our ability to discern things about ourselves and to imaginatively reflect on what we create. Simply fantastic!