Tuesday, September 23, 2003

Home sick yesterday and today with "pink eye" and a severe sore throat and congested head. So I bought my anti-biotics, rented some movies and am chilling at home. Just finished watching "Bowling for Columbine" and have mixed feelings. Its a good thought provoker on our culture and its fascination with fear and violence. I'm just not sure that our best hope is emailing our legislature Michael Moore suggests. One fact I didn't know is that the NRA was formed the same year as the KKK. Heston was interviewed and said one of the reasons that we are so violent as a nation is because of "mixed ethnicity". So a good white world would be perfect and no need for guns. This is the same Heston who is the spokesperson for videos of the Holy Land to walk where Jesus walked and of course his famous role as "Moses". Moore backed him into a corner during the interview and Heston spewed bigotry, corporate tag lines and a worldview of fear and reaction. Sounds like the corporate church I grew up in. The "religious right" is in bed with the NRA and needless to say, they don't represent me. I'm not a gun freak. I've never touched one. Its not a personal issue to me. I also say that its not the reason Columbine or other school shootings happen. They happen because of isolation and lack of community. Sub-cultures and alternative worldviews arise out of a void for meta-narrative or grand story. Kids who have been neglected, abused, warped and left alone gravitate towards the only meta-narrative that they can make sense of, chaos. No meaning, nothing has significance, everything is random, darkness rules the day. There is no story, no sense of belonging, no sense of purpose, no sense of hopeful reality, no meta-narrative. Guns and bullets are tools of chaos, they are not the cause. The root of chaos is isolation, lack of community. It is a complete disconnect with our created purpose. A Trinitarian God who created humanity with the need of belonging to the story of one another. Take this away and we have only darkness. Heston and the evangelical church have the idea of reaction in fear to this dark world. Heston will stockpile cash and bullets, 2nd amendment buttons for his lapel and spin doctors for his rhetoric. Evangelicals will amass campaigns of hate towards the secular culture. Down with Hollywood (unless of course they promote our apocalyptic cinematic crap), down with that "rock" music (unless its CCM), down with MTV (not TBN), down with pre-marital sex - as it might lead to dancing :) (yes I'm for abstinence outside of marriage so don't go there) "Down with this dark world - it scares us, oh please Jesus, come back soon, we can't handle it. Our story isn't big enough. We've reduced your gospel deal to getting the unsaved, saved. We have no idea what the hell that means, but we can sure rally around the idea of telling those damned people they're wrong and we're right. Isn't that what our story is about? Having the right information system? Mental ascent to the correct set of beliefs? That's what will keep those kids from shooting each other up with those darn guns, get 'em saved from hell. Hold a rally, get them to throw their stick in the fire, make it big, make it dramatic, get 'em all emotional then bring in the closer and get 'em all saved from hell, then it'll be ok.
Our evangelical story sucks. It is not a big enough idea. It has no room for the actual gospel, which is Kingdom transformation, Kingdom communities, Kingdom people who think missional, Incarnational living in the real world, love for orphans/widows, creative arts & culture, people who serve before being served, communities that live love, communities that offer belonging and are missional about that offer, people who embody hope in neighborhoods, who are good news to their neighbor. Our weapons against the emerging darkness are not bullets or fear, they are love and hope. We are not to lock the door and hold a loaded gun. We are not to cast a stone and frantically pray for the rapture. We, as children of light, run into the darkness. There is no hope because we are not there. I reject the evangelical gospel, its not a big enough story. I make another decision today to embrace the larger Kingdom reality. Sorry Mr. Moore, instead of emailing my congressman today, I'm gonna be-friend the lonely. Real community is the Kingdom Now. It is my hope. It is my story, the one I belong to.


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