The Difficulty of Post-Modernism

Post-modernism isn't terribly difficult to understand. Simply put: everything is ambiguous. Everything is subjective and open to interpretation by the individual. Now my colleagues might say I'm trivialize a broad and diverse area of study but that is the definition I use tonight. And since post-modernism lets me define my terms, I am right.

The difficult thing about post-modernism isn't disproving that it's wrong. To me the difficulty lies in that there may be some truth to the precepts it engenders. As a Christian I realize that there is truth in this world. For there to be truth there must exist absolutes which I have no problem with. What I do struggle with is that not everything is absolute. I'm sure I shocked some people who know me with that statement.

Truth is, no pun intended, that God is infinitely more complex and amazing then we can ever fathom. The problem that modernism and black-and-white thinking has caused is that we've forgotten that fact and limited God to a small cubicle. While Jesus is the right and only way, and yes the road is narrow, perhaps its not quite as narrow as we think.

I'll leave it at that for now because my dear friend Gabe is about to enlighten me. Take care!


Meyers-Brigg Meets the Bible

Recently for work we went off to Tulsa where we did a workshop based off of the MBTI assessment. For those of you who don't know, this is the personality test that tries to pinpoint certain styles you have in how you handle your affairs. For example, the most known trait is that of introversion or extroversion. Introverts tend to draw more energy from within while extroverts draw more energy from being around other people and their external environment.

It occured to me during this test that this may also affect how we approach the Bible and evangelism. I believe this thought has partially been reinforced by the recent responses to my posts.

The second trait is whether or not you are a sensory or intuitive person (S or N). Sensory people like to be involved in the details while intuitive people see the broader picture. People of type N can go from A to Z with nothing in between while people of type S go from A to Z by literally going A, B, C up to Z.

Although this is not an attempt to rationalize the differences between Gabe, Ann and myself I do think it does shed light on how we see the world. Both Gabe and Ann seem to be pointing at the details of ministry such as personal involvement. However, I lean towards the benefit of having Christians involved in politics, the judicial system, the education system and every other public facet of life. Positive influence not only comes at the personal level, it also comes at the broader more public spectrum as well. This is a big part of why I believe that Christians should be involved in politics because the large pieces affect the whole as well as the small pieces.

So perhaps we're both right to a certain extent. Or perhaps this is my type F coming out meaning that I want to make everyone happy. Now that doesn't sound like me does it? :)


Retreating to our monastery

My last post triggered quite a bit of response and thought which is exactly what I had hoped for. Keep it coming! I'm not even sure where to begin and I'm sure I'm not going to be able to address all the issues that were brought up.

I would like to hit on one thought that Gabe brought up concerning a Christian's role in this world. To quote Gabe:

"Who cares if the world is growing more secular...aren't we as Christians really citizens of another kingdom...a heavenly kingdom?"

The thing that strikes me about this statement is how it seems to step away from any involvement on any broad level since we are not to be "of this world." Perhaps that's what monasteries are for, but we are called to be the "salt of the earth" and "light of the world (Matt 5:13-16)." Being the light and salt of this world doesn't mean that we retreat to our monastery or wait till Heaven and simply say "Who cares?" Being the light and salt means that we try to make an impact on the world we live in.

If we look in the Old Testament we do not see God taking a deistic approach to the universe he created. He didn't step away and say, "Well the world's falling apart but it will be better once everyone gets to Heaven." Instead he took action by creating Israel whose original purpose was to overtake Canaan and rid the land of evil. God, during the course of Israel's history, constantly tried to set them straight by showing them the errors of their ways.

Don't get me wrong, I know that it is God's place to judge and not ours. But we are called to "love our neighbors as ourselves" and to do that we look out for our neighbor's best interests.

I will get to the issue of Christians appearing dogmatic and unloving later, I just wanted to specifically address this type of mindset. And Gabe, I still love you, I'm just going to try and help you make the right choice. :)


Vote Values

Disclaimer: This post will no doubt get me in trouble with my beloved Democrat friends. It is a bit too concise and to the point to thoroughly get my ideas across and granted my sweeping statements as always are to provoke thought and dialogue. So have at it!

Church today was especially interesting. How can you beat a service that combines two of my favorite areas of study: politics and God? You simply can't.

The question that arose today was that our nation is under a state of moral decline. This is easily obvious to anyone who has a set of clear moral beliefs. Since that statement could get me in trouble I will state it as a clear sense of Christian moral beliefs.

Need evidence? The issue of gay marriage. Liberal judges over-turning rulings of partial-birth abortion. Constant bickering and back-biting between Presidential canidates. The liberal left waging a hate war against a president who is trying to lead the nation against the evils of terrorism.

Somewhere in our rush to separate church and state and encourage tolerance we got off the mark. Call it post-modernism, call it a bluring of reality, whatever term you may use to define it not every viewpoint is correct and equally right. That philosophy, which is adhered to in our schools, politics, and even religious views is leading us straight into decline.

What needs to be done? Can Christians passively stand on the sidelines? As Kent Allen says: "Vote values." Take an active role in politics and carefully think on the issues that matter. Do not be deceived by Michael Moore or CNN, be selective and rational about what you believe. Perhaps most importantly though is for Christians to get involved. Especially us young Americans who tend to spend more time discussing movies and television and not involving ourselves in the world around us. Its time to step it up a notch and get going. In the words of George Bush, "Let's roll!"


Love Agape Style

Love is a wonderful, troubling, confusing concept for any 20-something. The emotional highs and lows of relationships can leave one drained and disillusioned. Fortunately there is another love that one can ascribe to. Unfortunately it isn't any less confusing, but thankfully easily attainable through the grace of God.

That love, as I'm sure you've deduced from the title, is called agape love. Many of us growing up in the church have heard this word frequently. I would dare to say that there are very few of us who actually grasp what it truly means. Agape love is uncoditional, self-sacrificing love. Perhaps the greatest thing about agape love is that it is not driven by emotion. To quote All Mine to Give, "Agape is based on attitudes and actions" and says "I'll love you whether you love me or not." Perhaps the hardest part of agape is that it requires us to love unconditionally. This means loving someone who has wronged us, loving someone who we deem unworthy of love along with loving people we find easy to love.

I have not even scratched the surface of this great area of study. Our intergenerational connection group has just began looking at this in depth and this study has really made me think about how I treat those around me. I'm sure there will be more on this subject to come.



"...but what can't be argued these days is that bloggers have power and they're wielding it with a simple turn of phrase and a computer keyboard (Oklahoma Gazette, Oct 6)." Blogs are everywhere these days and have even been labeled the new "watchdogs of the mainstream media." Blogs bring new meaning to the term Information Highway in many respects. Certainly a great deal of blogs cover no more then the detail of someone's daily life in that they like cats, boys, and eat panacakes for breakfast. Did I mention they are so in love with Brad Pitt? But at the same time blogs have the capacity to give voice to anyone who happens to fall outside of mainstream media attention, which gives new power to the average Joe.

This blog will attempt to meet these two extremes somewhere in the middle. I won't shed light on the misgivings of Dan Rather's fact checking abilities nor will I bore you with the trivial details of my mundane life. Instead I will hone my writing and thought processes while perhaps shedding to you some light on my worldview and paradigms. Honors kids: eat your heart out.