Saturday, January 12, 2008

Commitment Sunday

Tape Cross

Tomorrow is Commitment Sunday within the Salvation Army and I thought it beneficial for me to communicate my commitments, as I see them ::
  • I am a follower of God in the way of Jesus (a phrase that Brian McLaren uses in Everything Must Change) and, as such, I am committed to bringing His kingdom to Earth. I believe the message of Jesus is one of good news for everyone and I am called to relay His grace in my words and, most importantly, my actions.
  • I am committed to my wife > as a husband, partner and friend to my wife and soul-bride Olly.
  • I am committed to my lovely daughters Dayna and Miriam > as a father and guide.
  • I am committed to the work of the Salvation Army in the West of Scotland and beyond. I believe the Army is where I am meant to be... within the glorious and varied tapestry that is the Christian Church. I am committed to the movement whose Founder, William Booth said these words ::
"I saw that when the bible said “He that believeth shall be saved”, it meant not only saved from the miseries of the future world, but from the miseries of this also. That it came with the promise of salvation here and now; from hell and sin and vice and idleness and extravagance and consequently very largely from poverty and disease, and the majority of kindred woes."
  • I am committed to fresh, authentic, relevant, and adventurous expressions of "church" and the emerging church conversation > I do not commit to anything that gets in the way of God and Jesus such as tradition, politics, gossip, and consumerism. I will seek do my part to promote a purposefully inclusive, generous and graceful expression of faith... wherever I am.
  • I am committed to my friends > the people I connect with / relate with / share with... either physically over coffee or food, in my home, at ((deep)), at S*N*A*C or at my desk [or] remotely over the nanolog, facebook, IM or skype.
  • I am committed to my physical neighbourhood... and want to shine my light where I call home... in Motherwell, Scotland.
  • I am committed to those I do not know... and acknowledge their intrinsic worth and humanity as beings created in the likeness of God.
  • I am committed to my employer in my role as a Business Analyst > I will seek to be trustworthy, reliable and open in all I do in this role.
  • I will continue to passionately explore all things that are true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, the beautiful - things to praise, not things to curse... especially great beats, rich coffee & innovative design... and use the ol' nanolog as an outlet for anything I find.
I hope this makes sense > its not really in any order... other than the first 3, I suppose. I will seek to express my commitment in the quality of my inter[action]!

Rather than tag individuals... I will ask an open question... who/what are you committed to?

U*P*D*A*T*E

I forgot to say... I am committed to my parents as their son and to my extended family as an active participant.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hiya Thomas, I'm curious for you to share a little bit more about the phrase you used at the top (borrowing from MacLaren): "I am a follower of God in the way of Jesus." Its an interesting and fresh phrase. One way it could be read, though, is that you feel that following God is the key, with the idea of doing so in the "way of Jesus" is almost like a style or brand. The implication could be that you feel its not really too important which style or brand we are following in the Way of, but more the key fact that we are following God. Maybe a bit like saying the key thing is that I'm running a race as an athlete, and I happen to wear Nike, but Adidas would be just as good? I'm fairly certain thats not the way you want it to be read, but your commitment could be read that way from one angle...any thoughts?

headphonaught said...

Hey Paul...

Thanks for the comment... and yes, I can see how it could be misinterpreted.

I admit... i am jumping on a bandwagon of sorts but the phrase jumped out at me.

Here's why:

* I think the term "Christian" has been warped and co-opted into something synonymous with "conservative" both lifestyle-wise and politically... I am neither.

* I am a "Salvationist" but I not just a salvationist... I am part of the great tapestry that is known as the Church.

* That's why I identify as a follower of Jesus.

But where does that leave God?

* Christian identifies with Jesus as being the Christ... the Messiah sent by God > that's why it is such a shame that its been tarnished.

* Follower of Jesus only focuses on Jesus. Do I only follow Jesus... or do I follow in the path God shows for me? I am too simple to think through the implications for the Trinity.

That's why I like the term that McLaren uses as a throw away comment.

Jesus is the way to God > My way to God. This isn't a Universalist comment that says there are many ways to God. More that He is MY way to God. Its a personal statement of where I am at. Jesus speaks of being "the way" and the early followers refer to this whole kit and kaboodle as "the way". That's why it made sense to me.

I hope this makes sense? If it offends you then I will reconsider the statement's use.

headphonaught said...

Paul...

Consider the mission of Shane Claiborne's The Simple Way community ::

"To Love God. To Love people. To Follow Jesus."

Anonymous said...

Hiya mate...not offended, just curious! I'm fascinated by the way we are trying to reconfigure the way we come across to people as Christians in post-modern culture and want to find out how best to do that myself, and why some people say things one way and others another. It wasn't an inquisition! or if it was, it was definitely one that involved cushions...thanks for helping me get a grip ;-) Happy new year by the way!

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