So just finished reading this book. Dave Currie lent me it, and big Charlie recommended it as well. Interesting. It comes ontop of reading thru some of Brian McLaren's books - the new kind of Christian trilogy. But its true. There is a sense of discontent among people who call themselves christians. I don't even call Church church anymore. Its something you do or go to on a sunday - if even that. I spoke at REACH about Church service and said how when you say those 2 words they don't seem to go together or fit. We think about dressing up in our sunday best, when we should we dressing in our dirty clothes so we can go and serve. We sit in our pews, listen to one person speak, and sing songs to move our emotions and feel good. Meeting together is good, but if we stay there we have missed the point. Thats why we continue to go week in week out with the same problems and struggles and we don't change, we don't transform.
Also listening to Michael Frost (recommended by wee Charlie) who says that as christians we got it all wrong. We separate the sacred from the secular, so that we can be holy and set apart, but the incarnation was all about God bringing the scared and the secular back together thru Jesus.
Anyway, back to the book. Shane Claiborne goes in search of a Christian, and he finally meets one, but in the most unlikely places - amongst the poor and in Iraq! So it gets a bit political, but it got me thinking about politics. Obvioulsy here in Norn Iron, politics and religion are a touchy subject. I've stopped voting, having voted in years actually, which may be bad, I don't know but reading this book I felt that God was calling me to stand up and speak out.
"We are called to be prophets to this nation" - Brian Houston.
Some parts of the book which stirred something in me:
- The parable of the Good Samaritan. You got to love your neighbour and your enemy. You got to help those in need like the guy who was robbed and beat up, but it gets to the stage where you have to start addressing the road itself, and the people who are in charge of the road. This is something Martin Luther King said, I believe....
- There is a fire. You see a hose. You grab the hose. You have a choice. You can fight the fire yourself or you can use it to wake up the firefighters. I believe this is a real call to support, encourage, challenge, resource the local church. No matter what grievances or complaints we, I, have with the local church, the church is the bride of Christ. This is something I have been discussing with Steve Mac, concerning the role of YFCNI.