Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Summer of Reading #5 LOVE IN THE DRIEST SEASON

Now I've had an education. I am seeing the huge magnitude of nations that are imploding from AIDS, political corruption and deprivation. This is a story of a couple who found themselves in the center of the chaos and allowed the love for a certain child to guide them, and often compel them through months of heartache and hope against the odds.
It tells me that even in the midst of incomprehensible politics and sorrow, the story of a survivor is a joy for all. The small stories of failure rang out loudly, even though all the while I knew this book had a happy ending. Like the stunning courage of those who see the death of innocent children and the one who waits for the remains of his dearest daughter. The survival and adoption of this one girl is a gift for all who have held dreams for so many others. Her story is the one we are striving to make for all. She is a jewel that declares that all children are as stunning and remarkable.

Interestingly for me, Mr Tucker made mention of a US adoption agency Bethany Christian Services. I serve on a local board for Bethany here in So Cal. We have been waiting all year, applying in Sacramento, to get approval to assist with foreign adoption. Mr Tucker writes that Bethany does not deal with African counties. Maybe that can change.
All I know is that the holocaust of African families is bigger than any of us can imagine. And we need to know about it. We need to pray about it and we need to do what ever we can to help.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Summer of Reading #4 THE COMPLEX CHRIST

This book weighed heavy with me, so I determined to plow through it today. I'm glad I did.
Some conversations of faith and seeking take patience. I have been burdened for answers inside my spirit about my fellowship and lack of fellowship with gay Christians. I am gathering with all sorts of practicing believers in August and I felt that before I meet with them, I needed to get my own clarity on this, from my own perspective.

Kester Brewin's helped me to put some little pieces together. Though the whole community of gay believers is actually hypothetical to me at the moment, I don't think it could become more than that if I am not willing for it to be so. I have to think beyond the difference to make a difference. No one cares if I approve. No one cares if I disapprove. I care that all people have access to Christ.
Last Sunday, early in the morning, I couldn't sleep. I began to think about the demarkation. I needed to know what side of the line the Lord wanted me to walk on. I asked him to tell me and struggled off to sleep. As I wandered through the worship service hours later, I realized the scriptures had the word I needed to hear. John 4. Jesus. Of course. He goes beyond the discriminating line and speaks to people. He doesn't pacify our small solutions, yet he doesn't get caught in arguing our every detail (he just knows our every detail). He knows we need Him. The disciples didn't get it right that day and only through persistent insistence will we begin to "get" Jesus and act like Him.
Brewin mentions John 4 and many other sources that show Jesus disregarding the "clean" and going to unexpected places.
There is poetry in Brewin's skirting of many other poets. Along with involved examples of evolutional sociology and biology, he comes around academic corners with imaginative prose.
I have been helped in realizing, as he teaches about gift, that what I give to someone doesn't, and blessedly should not, return to me along the same path.