Last night I fluttered around the blogsphere like a hyperactive butterfly. I started off in my default state, cocooned, clicking through the usual suspects, bored. It was all the same old same old and I was feeling all dried out with no place to go and nothing to do. It wasn’t until something sparked over at Bishop’s Blog that I metamorphosed. He had quite innocently used the word “orthodoxy” in a recent post. Now my cerebral pulp must been prepped to fire because my mind arched to a South African blog called Khanya who’s a… wait for it… liberal orthodox Christian (I didn’t even know that existed but if you don’t believe me, click here). He’s seriously linked into the matrix and everybody who’s anybody in the South African conversation seems to be in contact with him (maybe I have limited exposure). Reading the headings of his latest efforts left me feeling like I’d taken a wrong turn and was heading up a dead end street. It wasn’t bad but it also wasn’t what I was looking for on a Sunday night.
Providentially, maybe inadvertently ;), I guess almost accidentally, I clicked on an item in the blogroll; and that’s when the party started. I spent the next couple of hours dancing, prancing and frolicking around, jiving from one link to another, reading the leading article and then rocketing off again deeper and deeper down the rabbit hole. I tried to stick to South African’s with something to say. Everyone who was speaking to me last night was part of “the conversation”, the emergent conversation. I felt like some were shouting at me like Sound and Silence and others were just picketing, singing protest songs like The Emerging Bracken but all were interacting.
Now that it’s all over and I’m left with some time to think, to ponder, to take stock, I’m happy. I’m happy I did it and I know that I’ll do it again, maybe not tonight but soon. I’m also happy there’s an emergent movement. You see for too long churches have been filled with people who didn’t want to be there, who didn’t even belong there, people who wanted to be someplace else and needed a voice. Now they have it, the space and a voice, a growing space, a huge, eclectic, psychedelic space. But that’s not why I’m happy. I’m happy because this whole movement of bodies migrating from the formal to the informal, from the recognized to the innovative, from the stated to the swayed gives us old fuddy duddy fundamentalists an opportunity. We’re been challenged. We are being forced to refine, rearticulate even redefine ourselves, and yes, sometimes even defend ourselves, because the old answers, the dogma, the status quo, the answer given because that’s the way it is, is no longer acceptable.
The cool thing is that suites me. I don’t want to be an old answer, dogmatic, status quo kinda Christian. I want to be a seeker. But here’s the difference I perceive: I’m not seeking to be swayed but rather to be even more firmly grounded on the truth. I’d rather be a swayer.
I changed my statement of faith regarding Scripture last night. After reading “Fundamentalism’s fatal flaw” I added the words “making due use of the ordinary means by” to the paragraph which deals with how I read Scripture. It’s not a change to what I believe but it’s a refinement, a clarification. I’m happy with it.
Oh, a Scripture… A proof text. Paul, writing to Titus, describes to him what qualities to look for in the life of future elders. If this should be true in their lives and they are to be examples unto us, then let us also spur one another on to these heights:
Who you talking to and what you talking about?