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Wednesday, June 09, 2004

Comments

Jay V

God, I hope there are conggregations, both existing and new, that can and will wrestle with these questions.

You suggest at one point that "in order to eat and breathe you need answers." Sure there is a place where resolution is helpful. Yet, do we ever truly have the answers? We have our theories, our speculations, our beliefs, our faith statements. Answers are harder to come by.

What makes a community live and breathe, I belief, is not discerning the answers, but 1) the willingness to stand beside one another in the midst of our questions; and 2) the ability to have faith for another person who isn't able to make that jump yet. "Bear one another's burderns (questions, doubts, etc)," Paul wrote, "and this is the way you live out Christ's teachings."

We spoke often in seminary and the CPE program I participated in about the "ministry of presence." It was a recognition that the guy who was crying in my arms after discovering he has AIDS asking "Why?" wasn't needing an answer. What he was needing was the incarnate love of Christ. Likewise, I learned early in my marriage that when Kay came home venting about work and crying about some situation she wasn't wanting me to fix the problem, she just needed a shoulder to cry on.

All of this is to say that the community can't be built on questions, but rather on mutual respect and support in the midst of questions. I don't understand why the church is so reluctant to embrace that reality of life.

Michael

no fair posting a comment which is better than the original posting :) whose blog is this anyway, i should delete your comment, the nerve ... :)

seriously -- thanks for the comment, you have taken the question deeper in a good way.

Jay V

Now if I would just proofread before hitting the post button! :-)

betsy

Thanks for posting those - they made my day.

Jeff

Michael and Jay - thanks for a bit of your own presence even virtual. Doesn't the holy often speak through the profane (so it isn't really profane)? This week I drove downtown to a Bible Study where no one showed up and I was so mad. There were 2 homeless men building a radio at the porch of my church. I realize now that THEY had showed up and were offering a message, which naturally I ignored and rejected at the time but am pondering ever since. Is this related to your post? well I think so. Thanks for those wonderful sheets of jeopardy. Jeff (palo alto ca)

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