Tuesday, January 25, 2005

the danger of God in church

I found this quote through a book I'm reading by Eugene Peterson called The Contemplative Pastor . In a section on "praying with your eyes open" he quotes Annie Dillard's
essay "An Expedition to the Pole ". She says about church:

Why do we people in churches seem like cheerful, brainless tourists on a packaged tour of the Absolute?. . . Does anyone have the foggiest idea what sort of power we so blithely invoke? Or, as I suspect, does not one believe a word of it? The churches are children playing on the floor with their chemistry sets, mixing up a batch of TNT to kill a Sunday morning. It is madness to wear ladies' straw hats and velvet hats to church; we should all be wearing crash helmets. Ushers should issue life preservers and signal flares; they should lash us to our pews.

That's what I want to be a part of. A community that is encountering and exploring and expressing the dangerous untamed wildness of God. One of passion and reality that gets messy and messed up by the love and life of God. It is a dangerous thing to seek that out. Life could get really screwed up. Part of me is terrified at the thought of reality like that. But like standing in line for the crazy roller coaster, another part of me can't wait.

make mine a black crash helmet.


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