A very idealistic young fellow goes on an overseas mission and finds out things are not as expected in a huge and very abusive damaging way. A crisis of faith ensues. He comes home only to find his church isn’t exactly a shining star either….
Its easy to blame the victim, blame the idealism, blame the theology, blame the church… at the end there is healing, but there is much left in a land of grey too. Its probably hard for some folks to even consider, but for the grace of God go I thing applies tome.
1. You Seek Our Your Own Suffering
2, You Constantly Feel Guilty
3. Theres no Room for Ordinary
4. Your Harder on Yourself and Everyone Around You
5. It Becomes All About What You Do
What he found out the very hard way….
It’s true, God doesn’t love us any less when we fail. But God doesn’t love us any more when we succeed, either.
The problem with trying to prove your radical love of God is that in trying to prove yours, you end up trying to earn his. Suddenly, your relationship with God becomes all about what you do, rather than what he has already done.
Jesus was the sacrifice to end all sacrifices, so there’s nothing more we need to do. If we were any good at being radical, there would be no need for Jesus. And that’s the whole point.
Jesus was radical so we wouldn’t have to be.
Seems like a message very similar to stuff from the late Rich Mullins. Here’s a deleted scene from the Raggamuffin film… the film was insanely long as it was, but this bit might have been just too hard for many to hear.
This is really nothing new… Luther wrote much the same in his commentary on Galatians way back when. Before that, even King Solomon pointed towards the same thing. My guess is one has to be in a fair bit of hurt at some point for grace to really hit home. Its far too easy a message to deflect as legalism can easily be pointed at some other guy.
Consider the “radical” type legalism Jonathan wrote about, folks think about it, but few follow through, so its not super common and the message doesn’t hit as hard as it probably might… Ie, many folks will say, I have no desire to “save the world” and they go one about their business, keeping this wisdom on hand for when they do come across a so called radical.
By the same token, Its easy to laugh at 1950’s legalism, ie, don’t smoke, dance, drink, don’t go to movies, don’t wear miniskirts as a relic of the past…. so this aspect of legalism doesn’t really hit home either.
However, if you want to get a contemporary firestorm rolling in some sectors, rather than legalism as we like to think of it, why not replace it with legalistic sexual ethics and marriage. Yep, I can hear the but but but but but type thing rolling in a huge way.