Tag Archives: God

Quotes Worth Repeating – God’s Truth Cannot Be Imprisoned In A Small Definition

“If we maintain the open-mindedness of children, we challenge fixed ideas and established structures, including our own. We listen to people in other denominations and religions. We don’t find demons in those with whom we disagree. We don’t cozy up to people who mouth our jargon. If we are open, we rarely resort to either-or: either creation or evolution, liberty or law, sacred or secular, Beethoven or Madonna. We focus on both-and, fully aware that God’s truth cannot be imprisoned in a small definition. ”
— Brennan Manning

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Three Things Tuesday: LOST, The God Imagination and God Is Not Male

First Thing:

(the promotional photo of the Lost poster belongs to ABC/Touchstone TV)

Being a big, huge, humongous, gigantic, colossal, enormous, monumental, epic fan of the tv show LOST, I have to mention that the final episode of the series aired this week.  I personally thought the finale was fantastic, but some long- time fans don’t feel the same way.  Some feel there were too many questions left unanswered – others feel the finale revealed that they had been duped for six years because they were under the impression that the show was about the mystery of the island and the finale was all about the characters, their lifes and their relationships with each other.

Now don’t get me wrong – I loved all of the mysterious stuff, all the theories and how when one question was answered I was left with 6 new ones … but I’ve known all along that this was a character driven show and that in the end it would be about the characters.  IMO enough questions were answered and the ones that have not been answered are a gift – in that we can still have many great and passionate conversations about our theories.

In the end LOST was about people, their struggles, their flaws, their fears, their guilt, their failures, their hopes, their successes, their dreams, their progress, their relationships, their redemption and the part that community or the lack of community plays in the life of people.

I feel that the writers, the actors and the producers have been true to that idea from the beginning to the end of this series and I think they created one heck of a backdrop that kept me coming back week after week as they told the story of some very dark, personal journeys.

I will definitely miss the show and all the community that was created around the show.  Thanks for the good times, the good lessons and the good memories.

Second Thing:

Jonathan Brink has just announced that his book “Discovering The God Imagination, Reframing Suffering, Justice, and Reconciliation in the Gospel Story is now available for pre-order.  The book offers a new conversation about how we understand the gospel, the problem that God is solving and how we can participate in the solution to the problem.  I’m really looking forward to reading this book and have already placed my order.  Go here today and pre-order one for yourself.  (I also recommend that you take a look at Jonathan’s blog which always has interesting content)

Third Thing:

Tony Jones is currently exploring an apophatic approach to God.  His first apophatic statement is:  “God Is Not Male”.

I have no idea how many statements Tony will share with us but several interesting things came out of this one post. One thing that I found interesting was that people were showing up to argue against the statement – I don’t really know what to say about that because even in my most conservative “the bible says it and so it is true” days I never thought the Bible said anything at all about God having a particular gender or even that God was both female and male.  I have always understood scripture to indicate that God was beyond gender.

Another interesting thing that developed out of my interaction with the statement “God Is Not Male” was that I was reminded that I naturally and unconsciously put God in a box all the time and that I must be very intentional to struggle against limiting God to my own imagination in hopes that I will recognize any divine revelation if God sees fit to lay one on me.

What do you think about the statement “God Is Not Male”?  What apophatic statement would you make about God?

Blah Blah Blah Blah Blah

I wrote a little poetry inspired by “How Not To Speak Of God” by Pete Rollins.  I hope the poem peaks your interest enough to make you get the book and read it.

IMG00025-20091007-0042

 

 

 

 

 

We have our divine explanations,

To explain our personal revelations,

Which reveal our very spiritual foundations,

That can get us out of all kinds of situations.

 

We simply love our theological musings,

That provide us with the perfect solutions,

In order that we may tie everything up nice and neat,

With our final resolutions.

 

We adore our idolatrous clarifications,

And really enjoy pondering our philosophical representations,

While we bow down before our conceptual creations,

And worship what we conjure up in our holy imaginations.

 

We don’t really want to think about all the inconsistencies,

And most certainly not about the baffling mysteries,

Of all his mind blowing conflicting identities,

Because we like to believe we understand all the intracies.

 

We reduce him to a reflection of human rationality,

Never owning up to our finitude or inability,

Refusing to face the obvious inaccessibility,

Because we don’t want to admit the utter impossibility.

 

We feel better if we believe our doubts and uncertainty,

Are just a stop on the way to spiritual maturity,

We like to babble on and on assuredly,

About comprehending atonement and heavenly eternity.

 

Our religion has become a science that places God within a realm of reason,

As if we could predict his coming and going the way we do a season,

We know and our knowledge just keeps increasing,

After all, being right is just so damn pleasing.

 

Now I’m not saying we should abandon our exploration,

Remaining silent doesn’t equal ending the conversation,

Transformative silence is a sacred and subversive vocation,

I mean, think about it – if it’s about God, should it be a 3 point presentation???