It’s the end of 2012. Ok, big, fat, hairy deal. Qoheleth was right when he wrote that there is nothing new under the sun. But, as this year ends I’ve been impressed upon to blog about things that I’ve grown tired of. Things that, although unchanging, have caused a change in my perception and in my heart. Maybe tomorrow I’ll write about things that I do look forward to.
1. Scholars kicking dead horses. I follow several blogs written by biblical scholars. These folks represent many positions; evangelical, progressive, Roman Catholic, Orthodox, etc. Two of the biggest issues that seem to be consuming these scholars are issues of Biblical inerrancy and Adam. Now, I realize the emotions that get involved whenever these are discussed can get quite heated. But, these issues do not further the Kingdom, nor do they bring edification. They are contentious and divisive. I think that we can live together in God’s love and still hold diverse opinions.
2. Public figures who think that it’s ok to use their celebrity to tell everyone what God thinks. I have in mind two people in particular. One is a well-known politician, the other a well-known media host and psychologist. Neither of these men are theologians. Neither of them, as far as I know, holds any kind of advanced degree in Biblical studies. Yet, they both feel quite comfortable speaking out on these issues. I promise not to tell the one how to be a professional politician nor the other how to analyze people psychologically. I would love to have them and others like them, do likewise and shut up about issues that they really know nothing about. God does not hate fags and is not pouring out retributive judgment.
3. White men who are leaders of the church talking about ‘training up the next generation.’ Yeah, it sounds good, but there are more things wrong about this statement than I can state. First, what is the next generation? From what I see in the scriptures any generation includes all those who are living at any given time. The idea of “generations” really came into vogue in the 1960s when the “younger generation” was taking the “older generation” to task over socio-political ideas. These became the “boomers,” followed by “busters” and Gen Xers and…well, a whole host of other names that do littlie other than divide and classify people. Also, the so-called next generation always seems to be thirty something white males. That just smacks of discrimination. And, these guys really have no intention of turning over the reins of control. But, it looks good to say it. If they really want to make a positive and inclusive move, they should include people who are in their teens and up in leadership, both female and male. Stop with the spiritual sounding platitudes. No one’s listening.
4. I’m tired of printing. I’ve been at this trade for over 40 years and I never have liked it. It is leeching the life out of me.
5. I’m tired of copping out. When I express my displeasure with my vocation many people tell me to quit. My stock response has been that I can’t because I’ve grown accustomed to eating. Meaning, I need the money. Simple fear and distrust have held me to this life for too long. More on this later.
5. I’m tired of fear driving my life. In one of my journals I listed things that I fear. They are many and they paralyze. John the elder wrote that perfect love casts out all fear. I am beginning to learn that. But, that road is a long and difficult one. It can generate more fear. With God’s grace, that is going to change.
6. I’m tired of living my life according to everyone else’s definition and expectation. I say and do things in order to please everyone at the expense of my own calling. I am who God, the Gracious Creator, made me. If I can’t be true to myself in that calling, I can’t be true to anyone.
Oh, well, I guess that’s enough for now. Thanks for letting me vent a little.
Oh, and…Happy New Year!