Thursday, August 24, 2006

essentials and non essentials

Hoffmann von Fallersleben wrote: "In essentials, unity; in non essentials, liberty; in all things, charity." This is my tribe of the church's motto, slogan, credo.

As I was reading Velvet Elvis last night something struck me. Rob Bell talks about that notion of God for Moses was that Yahweh was extremely different from other gods. Yahweh was unseen. There were no graven images of Yahweh, because he was without form. I think Rob is going somewhere else, but those words provoked something in my mind.

I began thinking about "What is essential in my own practice of worship?"

As Disciples we have a few things that we hold as sacred, but are they truly essential or just sacred cows that keep the faithful or the want to be faithful from a deeper spirituality.

Is a cross essential in the sanctuary?
Is an American flag flanked by a Christian flag?
Is a candle?
Is a robe?
Is the lectionary?
Is the hymnal?
Is the table and communion?
Is Baptism?

As I begin to say, "No." I know I am bordering on heresy, but alright Campbell and Stone were heretics. However, only those who are close minded fundamentalists who don't allow a discussion to begin. At least that was what I was taught in seminary. You can be a liberal mainline fundamentalist as much as a hard core fundamentalist. Both are lifeless faiths who depend more upon orthopraxis and orthodoxy than the beautiful mystery of faith. Yeah, I mean to be a little belligerent, but perhaps I see a church that is sinking and is rearranging the chairs on the deck to solve the problem. Bail or swim!!!

As I come to understand my faith, here are the essentials.

Jesus Christ
The Bible
The doctrine of grace
Christian Hope
God's hand in creation

That is basically it. I am not sure there is much more. Putting my faith in a crucible, this is where I cannot waiver.

What are your essentials?
Do you agree or disagree with this list?

fearless joy,

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Floyd news

Floyd Landis' father-in-law committed suicide yesterday Really sad news. It is a reminder that sport is sport and life is life. Life is more precious than sport.

fearless joy,

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Processing through Floyd

Today, I finally could put together what I thought about Floyd Landis' situation with steroids. I have thought for the last couple of weeks that he was guilty. I suspected earlier, but I hoped I was wrong.

I am disappointed and feel cheated. During the awards ceremony, I stood a mile away from the podium. However, they blasted the ceremony down the Champs-Elleyes. They began playing the national anthem and I remember hearing the murmuring of other Americans quietly mumble singing the National Anthem. It was the first time that I had been outside the United States and heard the National Anthem. I had a better understanding that I was American. There was a sense of pride that the US had won 8 straight Tours. Had won 11 out of the 20. We are the most dominant country in the Tour. Then all the jibes from the others were made correct.

Floyd had cheated and all that is wrong with America, he made evident. People who lie, cheat and cut corners. Whole team was probably cheating, but Landis was so dumb that he did not have his masking agent that day.

Do I wish he would have not got caught and still cheat. No, I think it is good for him to get caught cheating. He was. He is acting like some high school kid changing stories constantly. Sorry Floyd, but I think you cheated.

Man that hurts to say.

Fearless Joy.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Fishing with my son

When I was a kid, I never caught a fish. I went with my grandfather every year to fish for trout but I never caught a fish. I was not patient enough.

So, my son wanted to go fishing. He loves fishing. We have a fishing game on PS2. I took him to a trout farm so that he could have the joy of catching fish and I could shell out a few dollars to make it more conveinent for me. The response from Samuel was, "Wow that easy, I am a good fisherman." My response was "You have no idea about real fishing, boy."

Yesterday, I told my son that "We will go fishing tomorrow." This morning, we got up and headed out the door around 7:15 to go to a neighborhood pond. My goal was that we could catch some carp. Not to eat, but just to enjoy catching them. So, I put some bread on his hook and he tossed the line out. Within seconds the boy was hollerin' "I got a fish dad." He was reeling the fish in and out on the bank was a 3lb catfish. A nice fish. I take the hook out and we throw the fish back in.

Next cast and there is a wiggle off the bobber. Then it goes under. He pulls in a smaller carp.

Two casts and two fish. This whole idea of real fishing was gone. He says, "I got some fish Dad and you did not."

Thanks Kid!

A funny day and I chuckled that God was not going to make life any easier. I will be fishing more often, because he caught them quickly. Interesting thing was that he took it seriously, got very still after that watching the line. A good morning for a beautiful kid.

Fearless Joy,