Recently having finished the books that I've previously mentioned in this blog... I found a strange void this weekend. I don't know how people go without literature... So I went to Borders last night and picked up a couple new writings.
Searching for GOD knows What, by Donald Miller and A Grief Observed by C.S. Lewis.
I started on the former today...and read a great deal of it. I enjoy Miller's writing style, although I think he tends to meander at times on tangents- which i realize is part of his charm for some. Not so much with this reader. I think I like his authenticity, he writes with a hint of hopeful cynicism and quirky humor that I can relate to and presents ideas of Christianity in a very accessible way that I really appreciate. In the 70 or so pages I got through, he's been talking about his own journey in evaluating his concept of the nature of God. I've been hearing that theme a great deal lately and it's one that's definitely been hitting home for me. As I struggle each day to evaluate my own thoughts on who God really is. Sometimes it seems simply absurd to even begin to pontificate on such an enormous entity as the Alpha and Omega... sometimes it seems pointless... but through and through it is the most significant pursuit...
That sentence had to end there... I had more typed in an attempt to clarify this thought I had in my mind, but it didn't seem quite fitting...
I hope by saying less, I expressed much more...
This weekend proved to be quite difficult for me. I woke up this morning feeling like I hardly wanted to stick around...I'm just being real honest. I wanted to run away, flee this town, flee the country and every thing and everyone that was familiar to me... I wanted to flee life itself. As I sat at the store in the morning, I started reading Miller's book. And it spoke to me... it comforted me not because it's full of enormous revelations although I think he has some great ideas... it was more like someone sitting next to me at a coffee shop...listening to my heart and telling me they felt the same way I did... and left it at that. Quiet validation. I just felt less alone.
It was a long day of work...and I'm home now. Fighting, but mostly ok. I can't help feeling like an enormous mess of a person in many regards. I downloaded a few songs recently that incidentally had similar themes, both writers in their own words expressing an anxiety about God finding them once again where they started... I fear that at times myself. God found me years ago in a very dark place...and I've come quite a ways... but it lurks over me at times...this fear that I might fall again.
Church was interesting this Sabbath. I learned this church does communion every week...and I really like that idea. When you consider it was a command from Christ himself the night he was arrested... I don't think we can do it often enough, really.
How amazing would it be if every time a group of believers got together...whether for a social event or a service...or just to hang out... we participated in communion...just spent a few moments remembering what He did for us...I think that was the idea...just a thought.
Today I had a rockstar in my store. No not me... :) David Ellefson. I know didn't ring a bell for me either, but he was really famous at one time. He was a founding member and bassist for Megadeth. They were huge at one time... anyway his wife has been coming to my store for a couple weeks now...I just had no idea she was married to a metal god. He was a neat guy and didn't play up who he was or anything like that... and I appreciated that. If it were me I'd probably be extremely proud...because i'm flawed and insecure like that.
Oh, the second book I got sounds quite profound. I guess that kind of goes with out saying since it was penned by C.S. Lewis. Although Victoria told me it might not be the best time for me to read something so heart wrenching. Lewis wrote that book as he dealt with the loss of his wife.
The other day Tracey and I were talking about relationships and she stated a very obvious but profound thought...actually it was the way she said it that struck a cord with me. She said that every single relationship would one day be broken in my life... in all our lives. I have shared that idea with many others when expressing the idea that only God can be our center...because relationships would fail us...inevitably...but the way she put it was in some ways more tangible...and focused the attention on loss as the incurable existential dilemma... it was jarring and made me gasp for air. Take a moment to think about it.
Also, going back to Donald Miller's book again for a moment I have to mention an idea that he has regarding modern Christianity. He takes several pages to state how we often look to the bible as if it contained a simple formula... like if we follow a few steps then we'll be sure to succeed in life and gain riches and live a wonderful life. God becomes our magic genie in a bottle... the bible reduced to a chart...I really like this observation. Instead, Miller offers that we risk losing when we take this approach. The bible is God communicating to us in the richness of language and literature. It is God relating to us. I would add that the bible isn't a quick how to get what you want... rather a deep explanation of what it means to live... i mean really live...
The bible is God communicating to us what it actually means and looks like to live in a dying world... as eternal beings, in a temporary life, in a temporary, wretched body, in light of His holiness and in light of the life to come. Worship.