Work.

October 22, 2007

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So for those who’ve been wondering when I was gonna quit being a slacker (yeah right) and get a job, today was my second first day of work in a row. If you’re in the area stop by and I’ll make you some coffee…or sell you a hoodie.

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B Squared Meets Phil.

October 18, 2007

So if you haven’t listened to Phil Wickham by now, I recommend it. Vocally driven stuff with some authentic lyrics- not overly Christianese, but creative. Anyway, after I noticed we towered over the little guy I offered to be his body guard. He says if he needs one he knows who to call. Oh, he’ll call…

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See you there.

October 17, 2007

October 27th. Mark your calendars.
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Speechless.

October 11, 2007

A common prayer of mine has been that I would be able to write and use music to minister to people the way a lot of musicians and their music have ministered to me. Have you ever heard a song that struck you so deep that it actually changed your day? What are some of the songs that get you every time? While you’re thinking, Check out Derek Webb.

if you could love me as a wife
and for my wedding gift, your life
should that be all i’ll ever need
or is there more i’m looking for

and should i read between the lines
and look for blessings in disguise
to make me handsome, rich, and wise
is that really what you want

i am a whore i do confess
but i put you on just like a wedding dress
and i run down the aisle
i’m a prodigal with no way home
but i put you on just like a ring of gold
and i run down the aisle to you

so could you love this bastard child
though i don’t trust you to provide
with one hand in a pot of gold
and with the other in your side
i am so easily satisfied
by the call of lovers less wild
that i would take a little cash
over your very flesh and blood

i am a whore i do confess
but i put you on just like a wedding dress
and i run down the aisle
i’m a prodigal with no way home
but i put you on just like a ring of gold
and i run down the aisle to you

because money cannot buy
a husband’s jealous eye
when you have knowingly deceived his wife


Skalloween.

October 11, 2007

I gotta put the word out for my lil’ bro. His band, The Senior Citizens, has its first show October 20th. Yeah, that’s right. Believe it. Cameron Gumpy’s first gig came before mine. I’m disappointed too, but it should be sweet. Please excuse Mr. Fantastic…

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Pietism.

October 7, 2007

Moving on. You guessed it, the second “ism” is pietism. Guinness defines it as,

a “heart religion,” an understanding and way of believing that places piety, or total life devotion, at the center of the Christian faith. Long a feature of Christian orthodoxy, pietism became a recognizable religious movement at the end of the seventeenth century. As such it stands as a movement of revival in protest against other emphases, such as sacramentalism and doctrinalism, and other tendencies, such as ritualism, legalism and- most importantly- intellectualism.

I quote Ferris Bueller, who quoted John Lennon, “I don’t believe in “isms”, I just believe in me.”

Ok, not really. Personally, I just believe the Bible. There were just way too many “isms” in there not to quote it. You know you were thinking it anyway…moving on…

Isn’t total life devotion what Christ asks for? Absolutely. Check out Matthew 8:18-22, Mark 10:17-25, Luke 14:25-33, etc… So why mention this as something that is a contributor to anti-intellectualism in the realm of American Evangelicals?

Similarly to how Guinness addressed Polarization, he asserts that Pietism itself is a good thing, however, over time it became deformed.

Reinforced by the polarization discussed earlier, the core themes of the Puritan mind shifted or disappeared- from the objective to the subjective, from the covenantal and communal to the individual, from election to voluntarism, from Calvinism to Arminianism, from the liturgical to the informal, and from a stress on theology to a stress on experience.

I agree with what Casey said about how piety coexisting with deficient belief is going to be false piety, while strong intellectual belief without putting faith into action is not true faith. So if A=B, and B=C…

To put together what I feel Guinness is getting at and what Casey already stated, do you think the shift to the individual, voluntarism, Arminianism, the informal, and a stress on experience has led to deficient belief and in effect false piety? Let’s face it, the shift that Guinness has stated is extremely accurate. I do feel that the subjectivity involved in the post-modern shift has led to the academic side of the evangelical’s brain taking a hit while in the pew or while reading their Bible. Anybody have a different opinion?


Polarization.

October 5, 2007

Right before I moved to Chico I started reading a book by Os Guinness called Fit Bodies, Fat Minds: Why Evangelicals Don’t Think and What to Do About It and so far I like it a lot. In the first section of the book, he goes over eight “isms” that he feels have contributed to the problem that led him to write this book. The first “ism”, the only one that isn’t actually an “ism” at all, is polarization. Guinness writes,

Ironically, evangelicals are often much more aware of other forms of polarization- “conservative” versus “progressive” in the culture wars, for instance, or “conservative” versus “liberal” or “modernist” in theological matters. But we are less conscious of this automatic polarizing tendency in our own hearts and minds and of its severe consequences. In 1853 an observer noted the widespread impression “that an intellectual clergyman is deficient in piety, and that an eminently pious minister is deficient in intellect.”

I read this and immediately I can think of people who I feel seem to balance the characteristics of intellectualism and piety, but I think that Guinness has a point that today the trend seems to be that people and, in my opinion, churches seem to choose to emphasize one side over the other. Do you think this is an accurate assessment of where the church is at today? If you had to put your church somewhere on the spectrum where would you put it?