It happens. To some of us it happens more easily and frequently than it does to others. Take a couple of days off from a task or routine, and it turns into a couple of weeks, or even a couple of months. Whether it’s an exercise program, a spiritual discipline, staying current on a given subject, or writing blog posts there is a measure of difficulty attendant to staying on track when one does not feel up to the task. During that time away from the particular routine there are inevitable internal wranglings and questionings about just how important that routine is in the grand scheme of things and about what sort of impact is being made by the practice in the first place, either on oneself or on others (like readers). Well, while the world at large has never flocked to this blog page, enough of you have prevailed upon me to resume, even suggesting topics with which you would like some engagement. So here we go again.
But I do want confess a few of the misgivings. I do indeed wonder about the overall value of what amounts to an intramural conversation about things we think matter. Is there ever a danger of substituting dialog for action, or banter for substantive engagement with those who see the world very differently and haven’t a clue into what we’re talking about? While there have been occasional disagreements among those who take the time to comment on this page, we really are having internal conversations among those who share a rather familiar worldview. Has anything posted truly informed anyone’s engagements with the “outsiders” to the Christian perspective. Really, I’d like to know.
A second confession: I feel inadequate to the task at hand and would often prefer to send people to the thoughts of others on given subjects than try to speak authoritatively myself. Over the years, I have come to the point at which many wiser men and women have arrived more quickly–I could be wrong. And I hate being wrong. I don’t think evangelicals handle that sort of intellectual confession very well. We’ve been hijacked in recent decades by a mentality suggesting (make that “asserting”) that true biblical knowledge is the answer to every question, and that such answers are unassailable; what’s missed is that the hermeneutic, not given in scripture, is also assumed to be unquestionable.
Confession being said to be good for the soul, allow me to do myself further good. I confess that I don’t always know which of the multitudinous subjects crying for attention I ought to choose for comment. Just a brief listing of candidates for the next post would include the following: a conversation (way overdue, in my opinion) about the juvenalization of Christianity (see Christianity Today) and what to do about it; the political races and the subjects around which they revolve; the pronouncements of the Supreme Court due this week on immigration law (given Monday) and health care reform; the continuing conversation about homosexuality and same-sex marriage and what it means for the church; the effects of social media on the emerging generation and one the human psyche. I’m quite sure you can supply many more. Where to begin? Maybe with the fact that we no longer practice confession very well, in any form?
I confess that I wish this blog were far more subscribed than is the case; but that would also be confessing a need for greater importance than has been granted. I confess that when I read other blogs (no names will be given) I have a hard time understanding why so many people take them seriously when they really don’t know what they’re talking about. But I’ll stop confessing for the moment and thank those of you who have encouraged the resumption of the page; I ask only that you contribute your thoughts and ideas. And maybe a confession or two of your own. I feel better already.