Tuesday, April 25, 2006

passing the time

i attended an administrative proceeding regarding an arrearage for child support payments today. it was for a man who had been paying on the debt for years, but at a very low rate because he is on a fixed income, and at the rate he was going with all the fees that were regularly assessed, he would never be able to pay the debt off. however, he had already paid off the principle & just had a bunch of fees left over. so anyway, i got to see justice done as the administrative judge agreed to discharge his debt. it was such a relief to him as we walked out today, and it was great to be a part of his joy. it's good to see the law working to effect justice--sometimes in school it's hard to tell whether justice really is done in our legal system.

i then proceeded to finish up a fun book (whodunnit mystery, British style) and read two others on equality in marriages. i'm going to see a friend of mine later this week who is in the midst of pre-marital counseling and was asked by the pastor: "do you understand your role as a wife?" so i was just looking for some material that would give her a biblical basis for her belief in gender equality & egalitarian marriage. one of the books was not that great, but one was pretty good. so now i'll have a direction to point her in.

i got a few more books on emergent church issues from the library, bought several fiction books at bargain prices, and started looking into material to maybe do an Old Testament Survey Bible study with a friend of mine next fall...

it seems i really will continue to be busy. but hopefully my business will be a little more diversified over the next year than it was this year. i'd like to be involved in spiritual growth & discipleship as well as my academic pursuits.

Monday, April 24, 2006

emerging thoughts

i've been reading up on the emergent church during this break, and had some great conversations this weekend about what's going on and where we should be headed. i've many thoughts going through my mind right now, but i'll just talk about one thing for this post.

one interesting thing about the emergent church in the US is that it's mostly made up of Christians who have been hurt in more modern churches. many times these injuries come from misunderstandings & miscommunication between the generation. these hurt people have left their churches, often staying away from church for a long time. when and if they come back to church, they're looking for a place where they will be accepted for who they are - even though they drink or smoke or just generally live a life that's not perfect from the outside looking in (as defined by the common churchgoer).

it does not appear that the emergent church is made up of new believers - the post-modern thinkers who are becomming Christians. one wonders if post-modern thinkers are becoming believers at all. if they were, initially it doesn't seem like it would matter where they went to church. this is simply because the post-modern person will likely never believe apart from a relationship with a genuine Christian living an authentic & consistent & grace-filled Christian life and would probably be content to attend any kind of service. however, as time passes, it is almost certain that the cultural and philosopical differences would begin to hinder communication and community and cause injury to new Christians just as has happened with many post-modern people who are already Christian.

it seems like something must be done about this. either modern churches need to learn to speak the language of the post-modern person, or post-modern persons have to have another option. unfortunately, most of the books i am reading by emergent theologians are written in such a way that they threaten the very foundations of the modern person's faith. as a result, people are spending more time arguing about these issues than learning from one another and working together at some sort of solution--a way to make the church a place for both modern & post-modern thinkers.

i really do think that it's possible for a post-modern person to follow Jesus. though trained in modern thinking as a soon-to-be-lawyer, i would consider myself more postmodern than modern, and i am a follower of Jesus. and as much as the modern church in many ways is judging the post-modern mindset and saying that post-modernity is unbiblical and is a threat to Christianity, post-modernity is a cultural phenomenon, a world-view, and one which will be with us for a while. i do think it's time that the conversation turned toward working together to reach the post-modern thinker. i hope that we will move in that direction.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

counting down

i spent my teenage years counting down the days... it was always something--counting down to when we would next be in the states, counting down until the time when i would start college, always counting down. since that time i've learned to appreciate each season of life as it comes, enjoying at least some things about every phase of life that i enter.

but i've got to tell you that i'm so happy this semester is done. as much as i enjoyed writing my papers and learned that writing is something i really want to do in life, i'm glad to be done with this semester. it has been the most exhausting one yet, and i'm not sure if it's the cumulative effect of 4 straight semesters or simply the fact that i was studying & writing constantly during this one. i'm so looking forward to a summer job where i can just focus on doing a good job while i'm there and having a little space & time out of work to enjoy life.

meanwhile, i'm on break, and doing my best to sit around an do nothing... we'll see how that goes. i'll start work in 2 weeks, but until then i'm freeeee!

Tuesday, April 04, 2006


it's that time of year again. 5 more days to study & then i've got to know everything there is to know about evidence, tax, and remedies. with just those 3 exams, i'm feeling much less stressed than is normal for exam time. it actually feels downright luxurious.

so studying is where i've been, and it's where i'll be until about Easter Sunday. It's unlikely there will be much action around there until then.

on a more interesting note, my church is talking about starting an "emergent" worship service this fall, and i'm to be involved in the planning and organization of it. so i'm sure there will be some thought-provoking blogs on that topic coming up.