Monday, May 05, 2008

My blogger friend recently asked why I put some words in quotes, so I thought i'd explain. I put certain words in quotes out of an understanding that majority of the people who read this or know me, understand the meaning of this ambiguous word in quotes in a cultural context. Somehow the christian culture I grew up in, tries to take these words and trademark them. Terms such as: "saved", "worship", "church", "spiritual growth" to name a few.

Here's the fuzzy... going to church is not a social obligation b/c we cannot technically go to church. If you are not at church you could still be at church. My point being we confuse ourselves by generalizing and implying words like Church. 1C0r. 3

People are being "saved" from many different things everyday. The truth is people are being medicated to stay alive or are "saved" everyday by doctors.

People "worship" through all different avenues everyday. They don't have to be in a worship service to experience true "worship", b/c people truly "worship" many things besides God.

People are "growing spiritually" everyday and dabbling in all types of spirituality. You don't have to be a christian to "grow spiritually".

Spiritually is a big word. Not conclusive to one religion or belief.

When we use these words conclusively we take away the power in which Christianity is built on. That power is the revealing nature of Christ and not the attitude of, "I have the potion and you need it."

When we generalize words and expect people to take our word for it, it isn't called faith. It's called miscommunication. The same kind of miscommunication that goes on with our wives, kids, parents, friends, or boyfriends.

We need to stop implying that people are Christians by what they say, or stop implying people believe words are interpreted the same way you see it.

Recently a friend of mine had a close family friend who went through a extremely difficult time. This familie's father was in his early 40s and died suddenly of medical reasons with a very minor past of health problems. He had a wife and two daughters. My friend was having a hard time knowing what to say to the newly widowed friend when she was given the chance. "Every word I thought of" she said, "would not be enough".

I understand we do not have the perfect language and even the best words are going to fall short of communicating the perfect picture. But when we generalize words and expect people's lives to be changed, we are in danger of boasting in an arrogant assurance that we have arrived.

Stand for humility. Not for doctrine. Stand on doctrine, yet with humility in our words expect the power of the God to transform despite our feeble expressions of our hearts desires. 1 Tim 4:16

The doctrine in which I stand on is terribly humbling. One that is quit difficult and still simple. This doctrine is rooted in compassion. Compassion coming from the root words "com" which means "with" and "passio" which means "to suffer". Jesus Christ had great compassion in living a sinless life and suffering unto to death.

The message of Christ is not given to us that we would have the answers to all of lifes questions, but to simply guide us back to the mysterious definition of life. The words we live by become more defined the more we use them less and the more we truly live by them.

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