"My heart is stirred by a noble theme as I recite my verses for the king; my tongue is the pen of a skillful writer." Psalm 45:1
I am scattered in mind today, but that is not too unordinary for me. Though I am scattered, I am hopeful that my mind is racing to themes of nobility - themes that are worth the energy of my thought.
I know this will seem relatively random, but here is where, today, I am exercising some of my mental energy:
* Why is it that in South America there are nearly 50,000 people coming to Christ per week, 140,000 per week in Africa, and nearly 900,000 per month in China while there is, on a comparitive scale, not much of that magnitude happening in North America? (note - statistics are from the Barna Group). Is our lack of understanding about mission, and our rugged individualism killing our opportunity to be part of the global harvest that God is initiating? It seems we have some things to learn from the majority world when it comes to what it means to be a unified community geared toward a common mission (also known as "communitas").
* What would a city movement of God look like in my city (Buffalo)? What about your city? What will it take for the churches to recognize their need to be the Church - one body of believers that are unified around a common cause? What will it take my church? Well, I don't think it will be from the email I just received while typing this............one of those "Ten Ways to grow your church and make all the other churches in your area look embarrasingly stupid and eventually hate your guts" type emails (ok, to be honest, I did just get an email about "Ways to grow your church", but everything after that was just poetic blogging license). But, it is exactly the point I am making............it seems everything is about MY church - as if it is an isolated entity set apart from the greater whole. I know there is a balance in there somewhere, but I think that we are living on the wrong side of the teeter-totter right now in America.
* Why did I just use the words "teeter-totter"?
* How much stuff do I need to unlearn about Christianity? How compressed has my mind become by outside influences in culture and group-think that I am unable to see some things clearly about God's world? What would happen if I (and you for that matter) pressed all of our ideas and thoughts on life up next to the lens of Scripture.....openly and honestly, not with the idea that we want to self validate? I'm trying to live that way right now. It's kind of messy, because some of my previously formed ideas of how things should be are being, well, peeled off like a dead layer of skin on a snake.
* Why is it so hard to focus on things that really matter, and so easy to think about things that are meaningless for endless hours?
* Why does everything have to be NOW? Is God in a hurry? If I don't hurry, will I mess up the universe? I mean, I want to win the world today, have Jesus come tomorrow, and be cheating death by hanging out at the crystal sea talking with C.S. Lewis by mid-week. Not really, but it seems that we operate that way doesn't it? I wonder if our lack of depth in Scriptural understanding, our inability to think sanctified, critical thoughts, and our lack of reading (good reading mind you) in modern culture are facilitated by our hurried, pressed, no margined lifestyles. What are we hurrying to? Where are we going? And what do we get when we arrive?
Ok, there you go.....some thoughts rumbling in my head today. I hope some of them have caused you enough trouble to make you stop and think too.
I don't want to be miserable alone:-)