Finally, after 6-18 months of wrangling and wrestling, worrying, deliberating, debating, praying, pouring over scripture…finally peace and wonder at the landscape before us. Yes the door behind is closed, but it’s not closed on a sad and ugly place, but on a place that also holds the wonder and beauty of the Lord at work. I have to agree with Susan “It is amazing the clarity when the decision is made to doggone do what Jesus told you to do in the first place.” Read the rest of this entry »
More snow, no school, more ponderings on church…is it love or is it niceness? (Cherry-Picking Part 2)January 5, 2007
Once again, I’m at my window watching the beautiful snow fall – probably another foot this time. School is closed so I’m still in my robe and warm comfy slippers that arrived before blizzard #2. I was planning to go shovel my sidewalk (and the sidewalks of both neighbors) but others beat me to it! First, the 2nd grader down the street shoveled and then my next door neigbor broke out the snow blower. I’ll get a chance to return the favor in a few hours.
So, I kinda poured my heart out in a second comment on Susan’s post about cherry picking churches. (Note: I wrote my recent post on this topic after the first comment I made on Susan’s blog). Read the rest of this entry »
It’s always fun for me when Susan posts provokatively (okay…all her post provoking – even if they just provoke a hunger for cinnamon buns) and she hits on a topic that is also on Becky‘s mind and my mind (Becky – glad you are back from NYC and blogging away).
So today the topic is leap-froggin from church to church and Susan rightly emphasizes that in our consumerist mentality we tend to shop for the church that is cherry picked just for me. Read the rest of this entry »
Since I’ve been spending an inordinate amount of time in front of the computer coding, (I program in LabVIEW which is a fun and powerful graphical programming language) I began to ponder whether or not my computer and software project is my friend (yes this is a sad commentary on my life over the last few weeks). I’m learning a new coding technique and find myself a bit frustrated with what my computer is saying back to me when I hit the “run” button. But the reality is that my computer is doing exactly what I tell it to do (discounting the occasional “insane object” error that is the responsibility of some LabVIEW developer squirrled away in a remote cube). Read the rest of this entry »
I’m feeling a bit crabby tonight. Working late into the evening and trying to decipher new software technologies can certainly put one in a rather foul mood. So I glanced at my desk and found Wadell’s book (yes I actually made it to the bookstore at school and there was one copy left – yea for me) and randomly flipped it open to page 68 and found these rich tidbits:
“All of us must be able to learn lessons in caring somewhere, and friendship is a fitting context for doing so. Think of all we can be called to do for our friends, things that call us out of ourselves and challenge us to act on behalf of another. We are called to give time to our friends. We are asked to make sacrifices on their behalf. We are challenged to be patient with them and forgive them…
Becky’s response to my last post and her subsequent post got my mind whirlin…(perhaps ducking is in order). Then Susan began a series on pastoral care which included her stories in three different churches. As I mulled over Susan’s and Becky’s thoughts, I detected a bit of overlap. (Though I would like to speak more of Wendell’s wisdom, the seminary bookstore was closed on Sat., so I don’t have his book handy. As such you are stuck with my wandering musings).
Since the small group forms the nucleus of many contemporary churches, one would expect this environment to breed the type of friendship of which Wadell so eloquently speaks. My experience bears this out. Those in my church who are indeed friends or who have played the friendship role in my life (Wadell has raised the bar of friendship a little higher than I would) have done so in various small group settings. They lovingly and gracefully bring out the “mirror mirror on the wall” at just the opportune time. Read the rest of this entry »
Wow! A friend of mine loaned me a book called Becoming Friends by Paul Wadell. Before I praise the many positives, I’ll mention two aspects that warrant caution. First this is no easy read. Don’t expect to pick it up, blaze through it, and miraculously find that you have more friends, or are a better friend. This tome takes time and deserves at least two readings (and I confess I have only made it through the book one time). Secondly, I disagree with the author on several theological points. No, I’m not a seminary grad, but a few statements did give me pause. However, in this case, it is well worth tossing the bathwater and keeping the baby. Read the rest of this entry »