Monday, January 12, 2009

We Believe!

So in another tab I have my email open. I'm writing an email to my pastor. So far, I've typed out her (yee that's right, we have a female pastor. Whuh?) email address and the words, "Hey Chris" (yee that's right, she has a male name. Whuh?... jk it's really Christine, but we tight like that) and then I got writer's block. Or maybe it's my chronic pansynitis kicking in again.
See, I'm trying to arrange a meeting with her for this upcoming Sunday, maybe just to talk about some stuff about where the church is going and hopefully share some of my thoughts about the church. But every time I think about it, it's just like, wtheck am I really gonna say?? I mean, she's my pastor for goodness sake. "Oh hey Chris, I was just thinking the other day, 'Wow, our church is pretty wack! Don't you agree?'" I might as well slap her in the face and knock over all the papers on her desk.
And of course, I won't just leave it at that... "Oh our church sucks" because it really doesn't. But I just wanna induce some constructive discussion nahhmean? yafimme? Still though, I find it quite the arduous task to write her an email saying, "Oh I just have some concerns about the church." Like... who am I? Some college sophomore scrub jabroni who thinks he can make changes in this 120 year old church.
Anyways, hopefully by blogging about it, I'll have to finish the email, since I already wrote about it and it would be stupid to announce it to the whole world (or the 4 people who read this) and never do it. That would indeed be buffoonery.

Anyways, onto more pressing topics. That stupid email topic took up four short paragraphs. Emburressin... Stay with me though!
So I've ventured down the river from my Irresistible Revolution days and I am now swimming amidst the verbal waters of a literary genius by the name of Brother Yun. (dang that sentence was deep and metaphorical) And don't hate on Brother Yun because he has a foolish name. That's messed up. Actually, to correct myself, he is not a literary genuis. He's just your average Asian.His book that I'm trying to read right now is called The Heavenly Man. Again, I know it sounds stupid, but it's really interesting. A supposedly true story about the underground church in China during Mao's communist regime. The book. is. loaded. with. miracles! Of him having visions, having those visions fulfilled, him escaping the police, him scaling walls, running miles within minutes, the list goes on. And I'm only past the first 80 pages of this 350+pg book. Ridiculoso. Anyways, it got Nathan thinking, where are today's miracles?
I mentioned in an earlier post that Shane Claiborne's argument is that we really shelter ourselves from seeing any miracles because we rarely need them. Food, medicine, housing... these are all things we have easy access to without transcendental assistance. And plus, Jesus reprimands the people who ask for a miracle... But dang dude. I really wanna see a one. I really wanna have a vision from God.
So far in my life, I have only witnessed one miracle.And that was freakin glorious. But I want to see another one. This time, something more substantial maybe... Of course, I've had answered prayers. Big prayers, too, that seemed very very unlikely. And I will be one of those people who attest to the little miracles of everyday life. But you know what I mean though. I wanna see a big one. That I know was from God. Like if one day I woke up and was 5'11. Miracle. That would be awesome. Add that to the prayer request list.
Sometimes I just feel like we worship a shadow of the God we really profess to follow. We take so few risks that we can never really witness the power we claim him to possess and we can never truly know how wonderful and faithful our God is until we actually need to trust him.
I don't wanna assume anything about God, that he can work a miracle in this or that part of my life, but I do wanna pray big prayers and take risks for this God that I've heard so much about for the past five or so years. I wanna see and be a part of something amazing that God is doing. I wanna see people healed. I wanna see the Good News be good again. I wanna see nonbelievers seeing how crazy things are with those Jesus freaks... Is it ok for me to want these things? Maybe I'm just lacking faith. Maybe, like those people in the Gospels, I'm just begging for a miracle. Maybe Jesus is getting frustrated with me. Blessed are those who have not seen and still believe. Maybe I just wanna know who this real God is.
We worship a God that is capable of these things. I know he is. He's gotta be. I wanna know this God for who he is and not for who the church makes him out to be.
So what do you think? Do miracles still happen? Are there conditions where they happen more often?

modern day miracle?


Tim said...

What good does it do for you to see more miracles? So you can have more faith? Please don't get angry at me, for what I have to say is important. I would suggest you to hurry up and find a way to strengthen your faith not by seeing miracles but by praying and talking to Him. I had a friend that I grew up with that stopped going to church and gave up on Christianity completely because he didn't get to see a miracle. And the dangerous thing is, if you have the attitude that you want to see a miracle, you'll start to find ways to justify how the thing you see is not a miracle. For example, the link you had under your post, there are plenty of ways to say that it wasn't a miracle but just pure chance.

I still remember the one IV large group I went when the speaker talked about "risk". How we should take bigger risks and go out and be a proud Christian. Your post reminded me of that when you said "take risks for this God". I disagree with that then and I still disagree about this whole thing on risk. I used to say that if you are willing to do it, anything that was a risk is no longer a risk, but just a blockade. For you have already foreseen the risk and deemed it unimportant when viewed under your main goal. But even that is not the right explanation. The real explanation is that Jesus has already take away all your sin and He owns you. Whatever you will be doing is to repay what He has done for you because you want to. He didn't required you to, but you want to because you understand how much God loves you and how you appreciate Him for letting His only Son die on earth. Where are the risks? What are your loses when compared to God's lose? Nothing. I don't take risk for God. I do it because I have nothing to loose and I'm not afraid; He has everything.

trueazngangsta said...

yo tim. i havent seen you in awhile. hope youre good haha. um keep in mind these are just my thoughts-- i dont claim to be theologically correct on anything nor am i trying to portray a "right" view of the truth. but yo, im just gonna say it-- i want to see a miracle. that's just how it is. that's just what i've been reading about recently and i've decided that it would be really awesome to witness God break the laws of nature. yes, probably for selfish reasons. but my faith in God for sure is not dependent on seeing a miracle. it would definitely strengthen my faith in God, as i think it would with anyone, but it is not a dealbreaker by any means. and i think if i did see a miracle-like a real miracle-i would see it as something from God. i dunno, you may be right. but i dont wanna assume anything about my reaction. hopefully i would attribute it to God though. it would definitely be unfortunate if i didnt.
my desire to see a miracle, essentially, is simply a desire to see God work and move powerfully. if he chooses not to show me a miracle, i have no place to complain. im just saying, and i've just been thinking, it would definitely be cool. hopefully you can agree with me on that one.
i also understand your ideas about risks, and theyre definitely valid. i agree that our lives and bodies are on loan to us from God and that everything we do for his sake is just giving back what is already his. and i definitely agree that our understanding of the Cross and of who God is and what he's done should in fact lead us to do ANYTHING for the sake of the Gospel even up to death. but realistically, how many people are doing this? my desire to take risks is, unfortunately, a desire. and these risks are, unfortunately, risks. because i have a human body and a human and worldly understanding of life and breaking away from societal norms in pursuit of the Gospel scares me. living as and serving the homeless is a risk to me because that's just not what people do. these are the unfortunate effects that this world has had on me. not only that, but i will be the first to admit my understanding of the Cross is beaten down, sugar-coated, and incomplete. and i hope, that BY taking these risks and seeing God move in real life, i will be able to more fully know who God is-- more than church can tell me and more than i can read out of a book. and hopefully this will enable me to see that these "risks" are really not risks, but my privilege as a child of God. but for now, in all honesty, they are still risks. and i think reluctance to take these risks is because, like you said, most people dont understand that they "have nothing to lose" because we, myself included for SURE, believe our stuff-money, clothes, family, friends, etc-actually means something when compared to the cross.
yeah.... haha i dunno i hope that made sense. thanks for your input though man. im glad people are out there disagreeing with me. i'll see you soon hopefully.