Thursday, July 03, 2008

A tale of two preachers

My rant about how tough it is to find a faith home hit home with a couple of readers, including a Kentucky minister.

But a Louisiana Baptist, it seems, wasn't a fan.

I went ahead and responded. Exchanges about issues we disagree about=good.


realsupergirl said...

I totally agree that "exchanges about issues we disagree about=good."

Incidentally, did you delete my comment earlier this evening, or did it never go through?

TeacherRefPoet said...


Haven't seen a comment from you since 6/30. Perhaps Bloglines ate it. I didn't delete anything.

tommyspoon said...

I enjoyed your original post, but I enjoyed reading the post from the LA Baptist even more. We even agreed on a few things, this in particular:

3) Henry seems to think that corporate worship should be identical to private, individual worship, just more crowded. But there has to be a reason Scripture calls on God's people to come together for worship (Hebrews 10:25). In a special sense, the Lord is more present with the group than when we are alone (Matthew 18:20). When people who meet to worship join their voices and hearts--and who knows, maybe their hands too, Henry--something divine often happens.

This is pretty much what I thought when I read this sentence: "When I'm at a service, it's not to be friendly."

Then why go? Seriously? If you want an insular environment in which to commune with God, go to the woods. Go to an abandoned building on the outskirts of town. Heck, go to your guest room.

I'm not a religious person, but the one thing that might change my tune on that someday is the idea of community. Communing with others is a way to commune with God. Isn't that one of the reasons He put us all here in the first place? To love one another through our communion?

TeacherRefPoet said...

This sounds misanthropic, but I don't get closer to God through my neighbors -during the service-. It may be a shortcoming in my personality, but I just want it to be me and God. During the week, I want to hang out with them, but between the opening hymn and the closing hymn, I want to concentrate. What I am doing is too important to be distracted.

Other than St. Mark's, my favorite religious experience was the 9PM Sunday Night service at the UW's Newman Center. No songs, no decoration, no lighting--the basement of a former frat house, just a few candles, a priest, and a quiet, reflective atmosphere.

I can't pull this off alone...I need that smart priest there to challenge me. Oh, and I also like music.

That's why I get closer to God. Not to socialize. Different strokes, I guess.