COVID-19 has changed our lives in ways we don’t want them changed. And it will change our Christmas celebrations in significant ways, but I’m wondering, as difficult as those changes will be, if the pandemic might have a positive impact on our celebrations. Could COVID-19 deepen our experience of Grace from Advent to Easter and…
“Has he lost his mind?”
This has become a regular reaction to what I find on my Twitter feed. American Christians, whom I have long respected for their discernment, are engaging their political enemies with the acumen of torch-bearing villagers. Certain that Jesus is on their side, any who disagree with them are considered minions of hell. I look at the church divided and I am sad – and glad we are more balanced in Canada.
It’s one of those books that can’t be read in bed because your unsuccessfully-stifled laughter will make it impossible for your spouse to sleep.
John Irving’s A Prayer for Owen Meany is 30 years old this year and it’s time to encourage a new generation of readers, and those who missed it the first time around, to pick up this important novel.
But what if stories are just as true as facts? Pretty much every culture in the world, past and present, that hasn’t yet bought into our modern worldview, believes this is the case. This includes the writers of biblical narratives, who sometimes put factual information aside in order to communicate far more important truths about relationships and human experience.
It’s sort of like the difference between reading an encyclopedia and reading a long letter received from a distant and cherished friend or lover. Are the contents of each true – inerrant, if you will? Sure they are, but it is not the veracity of the information in the love letter that motivates you to devour every word – even the description of yesterday’s weather.
Pretty much everything in any church service is directed toward the worship of the triune God, but in Salzburg Cathedral it was so obvious. The building and the music represent the very best of human achievement, and none of it was for me. That I can see, hear and enjoy them is pure grace.
Game of Thrones is art. It may be bad art or art to be avoided, but it is art. It is a product of our culture and it contributes to the discussion about what it means to be human. Christians have some important things to say on this topic, and should not exclude themselves from the table. All Christians should be paying attention to this conversation, and some Christians might need to pay attention to the contribution that Game of Thrones is making.
In Western cultures we accept as normative the virtues of equality and of democracy. The “you are no better than I am” sentiment results in a reluctance to submit to legitimate authorities – the boss, the coach, government, parents. This sort of thing seeps into the Western church as well.
The gospel message to the zombie culture is that human beings haven’t changed. We have always been a lot more than our material bodies and we still are.