Running through my mind

Well after three days I am just now getting back to blogging. I had these grand visions of blogging everyday, kind of like a teenage girl and her diary, but alas my superb laziness and incredible skills of procrastination kept me occupied for the last several days.

I do want to defend myself a bit and say that I recall having some really wonderful thoughts run through my mind over the course of these last several days, and each time I remember thinking to myself "that would be a great blog topic". At the moment, however, I cannot recount any of these great ideas. They are instead rather fuzzy notions. Oh well, maybe it would be good for me to at least get down some of the more general ideas I've had for blog posts and come back to them later.

1) I do remember thinking that a theme for me this week was "incarnationality". What is this you say. Well, in a nutshell, it is the idea that like God, who deemed it appropriate to embody human form, our theology is best ariculated in the nitty-gritty, visceral, life we lead as humans. Biblical notions of faith, hope, joy, and love (as opposed to the trite notions of belief, wish, happiness, and like) are not easily defined apart from the lives we lead. Their meaning is only made manifest in the incarnation (lit. in the meatiness!), better yet in the big I Incarnation. I can come back to this later. I need to think about it more. Several things contributed to this theme for me though. First, as I reflect on the tone and message of 1 John, which is the focus of a sermon series at Christ Church, I cannot help but notice the incarnational nature throughout. This is apparent not only as John recalls the Incarnation, but also as he charges his readers to love one another. Love, community and the like are not easily done without getting dirty, without fleshy things. Second, I was reminded (and I need these reminders since I spend most days staring at a computer screen trying to think of something to say in my dissertation) on Saturday as I spent four hours shoveling and moving mulch across a yard that most people in this world work, really work with their hands, breaking sweats and devloping blisters. I began to see that Christ lived in this way and ran around with men like this and died for people like this. Yet, we (Westerners mainly, Americans particularly) find it more admirable and strive to achieve a place that keeps us from toiling. In our efforts to have the good life we lose sight of life, and if my theme holds true, we lose sight of true faith, hope, joy, community, love, etc. Thirdly, in a small group on Friday we were to discuss a taped talk on the subject of grace. Our time, however, was spent mostly on the passage of scripture referred to in the talk (Romans 5:1-11). Our conversation was prompted by the observation that the line of logic runs from suffering to endurance to character to hope and is then explained by the gift of the Holy Spirit. Without going into this too much, I find it striking that the notion of hope (NOT some sort of wishful thinking) is grounded in the very incarnational aspect of suffering. So this ended up being a longer reflection that I thought. Nonetheless, the first general theme that ran through my mind this week - incarnation.

2) The second thing that ran through my mind - the term Evangelical. Can we reclaim it from neo-conservatives?

3) Politics - I noticed in a short article in Parade that 21% of our tax money goes to the military. This is a larger percentage than any other category.

4) Entertainment - substantive music, movies, and television is out there but not as prominently as the shallow junk that floods this culture.

More to come...

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