I’ve spent the last few days in Buffalo, NY, a curious city. I am here for the Christian Musician Summit, which provides a pretty great service to musicians, techs, and pastors in the form of training and sessions led by some of the leading voices in the church at large. A great cross section of people looking to learn how to better lead people into worship and to cultivate their own skills in music and songwriting. There were some truly fantastic session and I could see people being inspired and edified.
While many of the attendees were in session, I had the opportunity to chat with a good friend about the nature of “worship”. In the Church, as much as we say that worship is not music, we continue to reinforce that it is. We have worship teams, worship training, worship nights, worship concerts, worship conferences, worship books, etc. I don’t think anyone would disagree that worship is NOT just music, but we, by our vocabulary and our actions belie that.
When the Bible speaks of worship, it speaks of bowing down to the King.
This Holy Week, I was stuck by this phrase “For the joy set before Him, He endured the cross.”
We are always looking forward to the next thing. Especially when we are in some form of discomfort or suffering. “If I can just hang on a bit longer, the finances will come in,” or “If I can just make it to the end of the week, everything will be better.”
As a youth I grew up around almond orchards. During the early winter after harvest the pruning would begin. My brothers and I had the enviable job (read: NOT-enviable) of pulling the cut branches into the center of the rows so that a brush rake could buck it and take it to a pile where it would eventually burn.
This is perhaps not the best forum for this rant, but as I have reformed and no longer post on http://arizonarants.blogspot.com/ (though, I just checked it out and it’s a pretty fun read), this is the place for it. To keep with the context, I spiritualized it, though, in reality, there should be no separation in our lives. As spiritual people, everything is spiritual or has a spiritual component.
So the rant. I’m coming to the conclusion that I hate marketing. Strong words from someone whose job title includes the words marketing and brand. I suppose what I hate is what we have done with marketing. In most cases, marketing has become, and feel free to quote this:
mar·ket·ing [mahr-ki-ting] -noun
1. Convincing people that they cannot live without something they do not need.
I’m standing in front of the Lufthansa Senator Lounge, their version of a First Class Lounge, in Dusseldorf Germany.
It’s 5:21am and the lounge opens at 5:30am.
What do I do with 9 minutes? Should I get out a book? A Laptop maybe? Check my iPhone? Check my Blackberry? Pull out my Archos media player? My nook?
As I go through a mental list of possible distractions, evaluating their potential to maximize this 9 minutes by location in my carry-on and boot up time, I am asked a question from beyond — or given a statement that is as loaded as a question rather.
Why not just wait.
Many people I know don’t go out with kids. And the more kids you have, the greater the chances you avoid going out. We have four kids, according the the prevailing theory, we should never go out. In fact, people told us when we had 3 that we would never eat out again. That certainly hasn’t proven to be true. We go out quite frequently and we have taught our kids how to act in a crowd. Depending on where we are, the rules are different. In a new place where they don’t know where we are going, they follow us very closely. If there are lots of people around, they walk close, holding a hand. If its a place we know, and there aren’t many people, they can run up ahead a bit. The same is true with God. The Bible indicates that there are times when we will walk behind as He leads. Other times we will walk side by side by with Him, and sometimes, He lets us run up ahead. Consider these verses:
Often maligned, often deservedly. And I have to admit that I’ve been among those who have said things like “I love Christ but I dont like the Church” or “I love Christ but it’s Christians that drive me nuts”. While I think, I hope, that people understand that what I’m meaning is that I dont like how the Church often acts and presents itself, but the fact is, I’m wrong. And I repent of that before God and the Net.
There can be no separation between the Church and Christ. There can be no separation between Christians and Christ. To love one is to love the other. And perhaps, even more scary, to hate one is to hate the other. We simply cannot draw a distinction between the Church and Christ. The Church is the body of Christ. The Church is Christ on earth. We cannot love the groom but hate His bride.
So what exactly is postmodern thought? What does it look like? And why do we think this way?
As I’ve mentioned before, I hated being labeled a postmodern. I’ve since learned that hating being labeled is in itself very postmodern. The more I read about postmodernity, the more it resounds. And the more I learn, the more I feel like I can connect with people in a postmodern world. I offer some thoughts hoping that this will help all of us in Renovo connect a bit better. So what exactly is postmodern thought? What does it look like? And why do we think this way?