Loving Resistance

resurrectionmeansSometimes upgrading comes with unintended consequences. Recording our weekly services has had its share of glitches these past few months. Here are a few thoughts with links to a couple of articles that might convey something of the theme and hope for our new series, “Resurrection Means?”

If we spend time talking about the way individuals are formed in life, we cannot ignore the way communities, Christian communities, experience formation and transformation. Luke describes the group of Christians experiencing what it means to resist the norm of its context and live into a way that proves to be something of a resistance. The leaders, Apostles, gave testimony to the resurrection of Jesus and “grace was on them all.”

Grace could well be understood as a posture of resistance where love is the root. Our normal response to conflict is retaliation. We most often find ourselves captivated by the relationship patterns established by an interest in preserving my stuff, my place. What would it look like if bearing testimony to the resurrection we exhibited grace in all things?

First, we might undermine the criticism that often comes our way, sometimes deservedly so. Take a moment and read Nicholas Kristof’s op-ed piece from the New York Times. Here is a teaser,

Today, among urban Americans and Europeans, “evangelical Christian” is sometimes a synonym for “rube.” In liberal circles, evangelicals constitute one of the few groups that it’s safe to mock openly.

Yet the liberal caricature of evangelicals is incomplete and unfair. I have little in common, politically or theologically, with evangelicals or, while I’m at it, conservative Roman Catholics. But I’ve been truly awed by those I’ve seen in so many remote places, combating illiteracy and warlords, famine and disease, humbly struggling to do the Lord’s work as they see it, and it is offensive to see good people derided.

Second, when  we talk about love as a central theme for Christianity, we may need to be more clear how a community of resistance to the norms of our culture is loving. Click over and read Stanley Hauerwas’ piece where he notes,

The gospel is the proclamation of a new age begun through the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. That gospel, moreover, has a form, a political form. It is embodied in a church that is required to be always ready to give hospitality to the stranger. The gospel is a society in which difference is not denied but used for the discovery of goods in common. It is, as Yoder observes, a society called into being by Jesus who gave them a new way to live.

What are your thoughts?

Jesus invites people into his life and his way. He takes what is and points to the new way of the Kingdom of God.  Come see what this journey is all about!

One way to think about the mission of Jesus - He calls into question the way things are and points to the way things may be in the Kingdom of God. 

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