Christians are suffering a crisis of the First Commandment: that’s the one that goes, “You shall have no other gods but me.”
It seems to me reasonable to assume that if a person is, say, a Minnesota Twins fan, she doesn’t pull on Milwaukee Brewers gear for the Big Game.
We’ve all asked ourselves, when hearing of some moment of historical courage, “What would I have done?”
It’s 12:10 afternoon on January 1, and I just did a Twitter search for #NewYearsResolutions.
Both before and after Charlottesville, I’ve been seeing all sorts of calls to respond to palpable hate with love.
The other day, a person whom I do not know commented on a Facebook post I made objecting to Donald Trump’s announcement that “We’re going to start saying ‘Merry Christmas’ again.”
“Those in whom the Spirit comes to live are God’s new Temple. They are, individually and corporately, places where heaven and earth meet.”
So, Donald Trump will be inaugurated on Friday as our next president.
This morning, I announced to my daughter Else that today was finally Epiphany!
Dear followers of OMG,
In the late ’60s and ’70s, my father was a Professor of New Testament in the Religion Department at Concordia College.
A year or so back, thanks to my first cousin once removed (that’d be my cousin Peder’s daughter Solvei: I had to go to a website to make sure I had that relationship term right), I learned about the band Postmodern Jukebox.
“Remembering is a noble and necessary act. The call of memory, the call to memory, reaches us from the very dawn of history. No commandment figures so frequently, so insistently, in the Bible. It is incumbent upon us to remember the good we have received, and the evil we have suffered.” Elie Wiesel, Nobel Lecture, Hope, Despair and Memory
What is, therefore, our task today? Shall I answer: “Faith, hope, and love”? That sounds beautiful. But I would say–courage. No, even that is not challenging enough to be the whole truth. Our task today is recklessness. For what we Christians lack is not psychology or literature…we lack a holy rage–the recklessness which comes from the knowledge of God and humanity. The ability to rage when justice lies prostrate on the streets, and when the lie rages across the face of the earth…a holy anger about the things that are wrong in the world. To rage against the ravaging of God’s earth, and the destruction of God’s world. To rage when little children must die of hunger, when the tables of the rich are sagging with food. To rage at the senseless killing of so many, and against the madness of militaries. To rage at the lie that calls the threat of death and the strategy of destruction peace. To rage against complacency. To restlessly seek that recklessness that will challenge and seek to change human history until it conforms to the norms of the Kingdom of God. And remember the signs of the Christian Church have been the Lion, the Lamb, the Dove, and the Fish…but never the chameleon.
Call committees, when sketching out a profile for their next pastor, are awfully drawn to words like these: kind, available, comforting, pastoral, articulate, flexible, intelligent, dynamic, wise, knowledgable, organized, trust-worthy, confident.
This morning, I found myself trolling some earlier blogs I wrote about Advent and Christmas, trying to remember what thoughts I have had about them in the past (I have lots of thoughts, but can hold on to only one or two at a time).
Sometimes, you know when a serendipitous moment changes the trajectory of your life’s plans.
Hermey: Hey, what do you say we both be independent together, huh?
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