Saturday, June 24, 2006

broken hearts and broken minds

he's one step away from suicide.
he's very nearly lost his mind.
he's asked me to come 1000 miles to take care of him. he cannot go through life alone--he won't make it. i am one of 2 authentic christians he knows. what i do is inextricably linked to the way he views God.

i will surely fail him.

and my heart is broken.

i have watched him go from one of the most brilliant and compassionate men i have ever known to a person whose mind is very clearly broken. i fear it will never be restored. and my heart breaks for what he could have been.

i see him now, reaching out to me, because i have shown him unconditional love. and when i do not show up to help him, i will be one more christian who has failed him--one more person who was supposed to care, but didn't care enough.

and i don't--i don't care enough. i don't care enough to sacrifice everything to help one broken person.

but it's not that i'm not willing. because i am. it's just--i would have to sense God calling me to do so, because i have such a sense of calling for the place i am in right now.

i wonder though, why God would not provide some person--me or someone else--to incarnate the love of Christ in his life? why wouldn't God ask me to go? why does this man have to suffer, and perhaps die, alone?

i just wish that there was a community of people who could rescue this man. even if i was able to be there for him, i would never be enough. one person cannot fix a broken person. i'm not even sure that a community can fix someone. but i do believe that a community can bring a measure of spiritual and emotional healing. but it's got to be a community.

why isn't the church that kind of community?

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

scripture's authenticity

so i've started, or thought about writing, several posts about my experiences in my job this summer. but i'm not sure how much i can share and still protect the confidentiality of the clients, so i've opted for caution--no need to ruin my legal career before it starts.

i had a great meeting with my pastor this week regarding the new ministry we're starting at our church. we talked a little bit more about the content of the messages and the focus of our body. so here's one thought.

one of the major issues that the modern church has with post-modern people is about their use of and respect for scripture. there is a great concern in the modern church about the sanctity and reliability of scripture. there is absolute truth that can be known. this truth is found in the Bible. you can trust what the Bible says because of how it came into being and how it has been used by the church over the centuries. there is life in the Word that is not found in other books.

but for the post-modern person, the sanctity and reliability of scripture is relatively unimportant. this is because spiritual truths will be confirmed and validated by the lives people live rather than the words printed on the page. it matters little what the Bible says if you aren't living what you say it says. if you live scripturally and i can see a difference in your life that is positive, then maybe i'll listen to what you say. but even if the documents are proved reliable scientifically, i don't care unless it affects the way you live your life. scripture and truth is authenticated by the lives of the believers who live it. to the post-modern person, the reliability of scripture will never be validated unless living by scripture produces the fruits of the spirit.

is that really so wrong? i honestly think that if you look at the teachings of Jesus, he too focused on how knowledge is translated to action. a person never really knows the truth until he or she puts it into action. at all times in history the Bible has been called into question because of the inconsistent lives of those who call themselves believers. i'm not saying that there aren't proofs to show that the Bible is reliable and can be trusted. i'm only saying that for the post-modern person, that whole discussion misses the point. this is because it's only when the post-modern person interacts with a beliver who lives what the Bible says that the Bible is authenticated and given credibility.