Facilitate and Moderate
Yesterday was interesting. When I started speaking from Isaiah 44 on idolatry, I stressed that we all are inclined to make our own gods. Like the man in Isaiah, he takes a log, warms himself and cooks his food with it. Then with the rest he makes his god and prays for it to save him. I argued that we all take the raw material around us to primarily meet our own needs and desires since we are resolutely self-centered creatures. Then, to secure these comforts, we fashion God in an image that will supply us with these. Although we may think we are more advanced than the primitive person who worships a stone or piece of wood, we are really no different. We create our own images of God. And these images aren't God. They are just images created by our brains to maintain our creature comfort. I could go on and on. That wasn't the interesting part. What was really interesting was I had hardly opened my mouth, basically just presenting my thesis, when people started jumping in with questions, challenges, comments, and discussions. The whole "sermon" time was hot with conversation. I loved it. This, I think, is one of the best ways to unwrap a text: through community effort. Together we can search for and perhaps discover the truth. I suddenly recognized the connection between my blog and church. I hope, with my cartoons and posts, that I will facilitate discussion and form a kind of community of a vast assortment of people. And since I am the moderator of the comments on this blog, I hope further to maintain the community of people. I absolutely love the diversity of nakedpastor as well as my church community. Like my blog, we have atheists, agnostics, skeptics, liberals, conservatives, evangelicals, health-wealthers, and some that don't subscribe to anything at all. And on top of that we're all downright sinners. For me, this is more important and valuable than homogeneity. Homogeneity sucks. Unity rocks. But in that unity, diversity must exist or it is only a contrived unity. Like on my blog, it is crucial to facilitate conversation as well as moderate it so that there may be community. We sometimes argue like crazy, but we're still together because we love each other. I think that's cool. You? The fine art photograph is from the mannequin series of my friend Mark Hemmings. Gorgeous!