I abandoned the regular flow of dialect to engage the works of others: Lewis, Dostoyevsky, and DeVries. As a result, I’ve enjoyed the invitation to minister to people in the absence of writing. With my eyes fixed on the cross, this blog seems less essential to my being. But, some thoughts have been stirring that I thought I’d share with you all.
Religion is not the problem, as some might suggest, it is infected by what afflicts the greater systemic issue. Religion is meant to serve as a GPS to the cross (where we find God) and the negative symptoms occur when we abandon our navigational tools. Religion is a stabilizer to our experiential and emotional perceptions; it is a set of beliefs, constructed of theologies and philosophies, which do not waiver when we don’t feel good about God. Sadly, religion tends to get the blame for things it has little or nothing to do with and its definition gets lost.
The greater affliction I mentioned earlier, infect more than just religion. The internet is a relevant example, a system within systems, which is meant to serve the user. Our systemic affliction takes algorithms meant to customize sites (like Google, Facebook, Netflix, and more) and reveals an ugly symptom of the greater affliction (the symptom being individualism). If “it’s all about me” it’s no wonder we point fingers at systems, like religion and the internet.
Dear friends, life is the system and it is afflicted by a chronic condition, the sin nature. Sin isn’t popular and it may be over emphasized in some denominations, but it is a real affliction. Thankfully, religion tells us that the God of the cross died for us. Christ’s death is the antidote for our chronic affliction and the systemic affliction is given over to the hope of resurrection. This is the work of God, through the gift of grace. And that, my friends, is the definition of religion.
"Just a Song," Girls, (Father, Son, Holy Ghost; music only)