Mandy's Musings

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Which Friends Character Are You?

Always time for the important things in life. H/T to Ros for the link.

Which Friends Character Are You?

You are Monica. You have a go-all-out nature. Your friends better watch out, because you play to win. Also, when it comes to order and cleanliness, you're a bit obsessive compulsive. Your best trait, however, is your thoughtfulness. You go to great lengths to care for your friends.


Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Never alone

I went to chick's chapel at MTC today ... BW was leading.

We sang this song called 'Never Alone' written by Simone who has commented over here once or twice. It was the first time I'd ever sung it and I was struck by the way it captures the truth of what Jesus has done for on the cross without feeling really individualistic. After some internet trawling this afternoon I was able to find the words in full. I'm hopeful I'm not breaking any copywrite laws by posting the words to it here ... I'll remove the words and just keep the link if I find out I'm wrong.

Never Alone

We’re not alone, for Christ is here
Immanuel our God come near
We’re not alone, for to our world
Jesus has come, eternal word.
And as he speaks, our souls laid bare
Naked, ashamed, sin is made clear
And yet he clothes us in his love
Never alone, Christ is with us.

The longest walk, earth’s darkest day
Noise from the crowd and mounting pain
His heavy load of grief and shame
Breathless that we should breathe again.
“Father forgive them,” comes his cry
Blackness descends filling the sky.
A creeping dread in every heart
Lost in the world now God departs.

The dawn will come, the sun will rise
Out of the grave we’ll see hope’s light.
Tomb opened wide, stone rolled away
Morning has come, a brand new day.
“He isn’t here,” the angel said.
“He is alive no longer dead.”
Our hearts are lifted, souls raised high
Christ is with us, Christ is our life.

Never alone is now our cry
In joy, in grief, in lonely sin.
Never alone for Christ is ours
He lives in us, we live in him.
And till we reach that final day
When fears are gone, cast far away
We live secure, trust in his love,
Never alone, Christ is with us.

SAR 2006

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Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Some emerging thoughts

I haven't spent much time engaging with the Emerging Church Movement (or conversation) but in a training session I've organised tomorrow for the Student Ministers at the Cathedral they will be talking about it so I've been doing a little bit of reading.

Scot McKnight in a Christianity today article describes one emphasis of the emerging church movement as orthopraxy (right living). Here's what he says:

A notable emphasis of the emerging movement is orthopraxy, that is, right living. The contention is that how a person lives is more important than what he or she believes. Many will immediately claim that we need both or that orthopraxy flows from orthodoxy. Most in the emerging movement agree we need both, but they contest the second claim: Experience does not prove that those who believe the right things live the right way. No matter how much sense the traditional connection makes, it does not necessarily work itself out in practice. Public scandals in the church—along with those not made public—prove this point time and again.

Here is an emerging, provocative way of saying it: "By their fruits [not their theology] you will know them." As Jesus' brother James said, "Faith without works is dead." Rhetorical exaggerations aside, I know of no one in the emerging movement who believes that one's relationship with God is established by how one lives. Nor do I know anyone who thinks that it doesn't matter what one believes about Jesus Christ. But the focus is shifted. Gibbs and Bolger define emerging churches as those who practice "the way of Jesus" in the postmodern era.

Jesus declared that we will be judged according to how we treat the least of these (Matt. 25:31-46) and that the wise man is the one who practices the words of Jesus (Matt. 7:24-27). In addition, every judgment scene in the Bible is portrayed as a judgment based on works; no judgment scene looks like a theological articulation test.

I found myself really disagreeing with this. While I'll agree that Christians should live differently, I'm convinced that our living flows out of our knowledge. It's been a favourite saying of mine for the last month or so - 'preach at the heart and changed behaviour will follow'. Like most things clever - it's not mine, I borrowed it from a friend (thanks Amelia!).

Throughout the Bible we see ethical commands couched in terms of theological understanding - Col 3:1-17 is just one example.

I'm convinced that it is because of who we are that we live a certain way - not living a certain way that makes us who we are. What do you think?

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