Monthly Archives: March 2010
>About two years ago, I started following Michael Spencer online through Internet Monk. He wrote with an honesty about his faith and life that communicated deeply with me. I found a resonance with him and the way he communicated. There were times I would laugh and cry as I read his blog. I felt connected to him in a small way though we had never met.
Micheal is now in the last stages of his battle with cancer. It was a quick thief. Through following him and his story, I have seen the power of asking questions, being open about struggle, and the call to follow, at times, without understanding. Micheal has pointed me back to the person of Christ time and time again. I am grateful that we will both get to meet Him.
When the world’s “all as it should be”
Blessed be Your name
And blessed be Your name on the road marked with suffering
Though there’s pain in the offering
Blessed be Your name
You give and take away
You give and take away
My heart will choose to say
Lord, blessed be Your name
>Parenting is one of the most difficult jobs I can imagine. There are challenges from your children, the world around us, and even our own personal baggage. This is true for all parents but for parents who value faith and their spiritual perspective the challenge takes on added dimensions.
Baucham, in Family Driven Faith, seeks to help parents who desire to foster their children’s faith and life direction. Throughout the book, he lays out an argument for the primary discipleship to take place in the home. He then builds on the argument that in order for the worldview to be solidified in the life of the child then all education (religious and non-religious) must mirror the home as the primary arena of discipleship. This belief has been personally practiced by Baucham and his family often at great personal cost.
I had some challenges with how Baucham’s belief leads to practice. Not because I disagree with the premise that discipleship should take place in the home, but on the connection to lifestyle choices. I believe God calls families to raise children in many different ways from family to family, from culture to culture. I do think that God has also given some universal principles to help us raise children that will be practiced differently from culture to culture, family to family.
Parents need to let their faith find full manifestation inside and outside the home. There are many ways where children do not continue to follow Christ because of their parent’s failure to follow Christ. I believe Buacham is trying to manifest his walk with Christ in the home he leads.
The primary danger I see in Buacham’s method is that it can lead to cultural isolation. This is what we have seen in other faith communities who have followed Baucham’s suggested pattern. Both the Amish and the Mennonites have gone the route of cultural isolation to protect and cultivate worldview. Both have been successful in creating communities that hold to a specific worldview but with minimal impact on the world around them. While the faith formation of our children is not something to be gambled with, I am not sure that the solution being offered will help cultivate faith and fulfillment of the Great Commission.
>While I was enjoying breakfast this morning with my wife at a restaurant, I noticed two men with Bibles open who appeared to be having a Bible study. One of them was talking fairly loud and seemed to be in control of the conversation. The longer I watched the table the more I noticed the other gentleman’s attention drifting.
I wonder how many times I have been mentoring/leading a study and felt like it went great. Only to have the other person disengage. The priority is not just getting words out but in communicating with the other person. Sometimes that is done best by just listening.
>My computer is causing me all kinds of problems. There is nothing like have an great tool and not understanding it well enough to make it work the way it was designed to run. I think that is how most of us live our lives. We understand somethings but not the whole well enough. Even being in a relationship with God, we are not going to be able to understand it all. That is why we must trust Him.
>I ran two days ago. Yesterday, I played basketball. Today, my legs are killing me. I really don’t want to use them. But I have noticed that if I do use them it helps the soreness to go away. I wonder if the same idea of working through the pain is part of the reason why God asks us to practice forgiveness towards those who have wronged us.
>I was listening to No Line on the Horizon this morning on the way to work. It hit me that for Americans who attend church Bono is the poster boy for what they want in their lives. I don’t mean this as a slam against Bono but against the expectations and dreams of church attenders.
He is successful, rich, cool, and spiritual. It does not appear that the world hates him. He is able to meet with presidents and world leaders. The media applaud him and he has been recognized by his profession as one of the best of all time.
I think God has blessed Bono and I think that he for the most part has tried to be faithful with his blessing. The problem is that we in America think this is God’s plan for all people. For many in American churches, we see Bono as a normative Christian experience rather than a special exception.