I haven’t penned an article for Examiner since 2009. A whole three years of life experiences have passed by that have been largely neglected by this particular web space. Three years of religious experiences. Three years of seeing what Christ is doing in my life, and in our region. Three years of figuring things out. And so this space is in dire need of renewal.
Today seems like a day for renewal for a lot of reasons. It all started Sunday morning at a small church in Monroeville. I was the guest preacher, and my mind was elsewhere. As soon as that sermon was done, my wife and I were going to load up the car and drive to New York City for some much needed vacation time. I spoke about Luke 14, about how in a world where every news story in the paper is negative and people are driving themselves batty over the economy and other messes in our daily life, that we were called to love Jesus more than our families, more than our bank accounts, more than our love lives. If we do that, we’re going to be Salty People, people that stand out in a world of bland, flavorless worriers. And then I packed up the car and drove to New York.
Fast forward to today. I woke up this morning to a bank error. A $250 bank error. Not at all in my favor. To put it in the deepest theological terms, I went bat crap crazy. I freaked out, calling the bank, calling the student loan company, calling the bank again, pacing the house, yelling into the phone, pacing the house some more. Finally, at the end of a long struggle, it was completely clear that there was nothing that could be done. Nothing. Zilch. Zero. We were, again, to use a technical theological term, screwed.
So my wife and I went to the beach just hoping to get our minds off of things. And as I was sitting there, watching the waves crash against the shore, I realized that I was currently living my Sunday sermon, and not in a good way. I was only willing to love Jesus as long as there was cash in my bank account. As soon as it was gone, I absolutely lost my bearing. The truth north star of Christ was drown out by the blinding sun of financial junk.
I bet I’m not alone. I bet at least a few of you could stand with me and agree that Jesus falls in line behind whatever is most pressing or depressing in our lives at any given moment. And in those moments, all that can happen is to repent.
This is a word that is taken largely out of context. It really only shows up at Gay Marriage protests, which makes us all squirm in our seats a little bit when someone is telling us to repent. But in truth, the word means to turn around, to start moving in a different direction, to tear things down and then to renew.
And so this site…
When I started here at Examiner, I wanted to create stories about Christian spirituality, almost like my blog, but I think that just takes too much time and energy, and so three year lapses in writing tend to occur. But as I’ve spent some time reading the paper, watching the news, and just in general paying attention to life around me, I realize that Jesus would have a lot to say about what’s going on in our world. Jesus would have a lot to say about the election of people in our country. Jesus would have a lot to say about our response to the economy. Jesus would have a lot to say. I hardly suggest that I could speak on his behalf, but together I bet we could come to a deeper understanding of what Jesus has to say in our world.
Help me out here! Make a few comments here below and tell me what you would like a Christian perspective on. What are the questions that you might have about the Christian worldview? What are the things you don’t like about Christianity that we might be able to clear up a little bit in this space? Leave some comments, and we’ll figure out where to go from here.
In the meantime, don’t forget that freakouts can lead to renewal. The important thing is to remember that when you’ve torn things down, you need to build things up again.