Question Tuesday: Uhhhh…

So, I’ve been super, super busy and it isn’t even mid term yet! That’s why this Tuesday’s Question Tuesday is coming to you mid afternoon, and why I’m taking the easy way out and stealing from another blog I like a lot. Today’s question:

Is there any particular topic (within the general scope of this blog) you’d like to see show up in a future blog post here at Speak What We Feel?

What questions do you have for me (blog post worthy or otherwise)?

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11 Responses to Question Tuesday: Uhhhh…

  1. joshua says:

    If you were stranded on a desert island with only 5…

  2. joshua says:

    On a more serious note though, I’m curious what passages you find the most theologically problematic, which passages you find the most morally troublesome in the Bible. And also if you were to rate the top five problems with Christian churches and American Christians, what would those be?

    • reneamac says:

      Hmmm… Good questions. Off the top of my head: passages I find theologically problematic for me are the ones which use predestination/election language, including the hardening of Pharaoh’s heart in Exodus; as well as passages that could potentially suggest the possibility of losing one’s salvation. And speaking of salvation, what’s up with that bit about women being saved through childbirth? Morally troublesome passages… geez; you could practically flip the OT open at random.

      American churches/Christians…? That’s tricky because there are so many different kinds of them/us. You’ve heard me talk about this some, so I won’t bore you by repeating that. I’d say the number one issue is infighting.

      • joshua says:

        About the church/Christians, I’m more interested in a personal litmus test to gauge where you’re at, I mean we write all kinds of things and on all types of issues, especially those we perceive as relevant, but that doesn’t indicate we’re personally upset or that our list mirrors socially constructed prioritization of critiques.

        • reneamac says:

          Ah. I see. Well, inflammatory infighting does make me pretty upset/disheartened. So does far-leaning right-wing conservatism (if I lived elsewhere it might just as easily be far-leaning leftism…), conservative views on gender roles, the fight against the “homosexual agenda”, and a general inability to engage with culture, perhaps particularly through movies, music, lit… art.

  3. Val says:

    hmmmmMMMM. I’ll ask questions *I’ve* been thinking about.

    -The role of meals and meal-sharing in Jesus’ ministry. I’ve been thinking about this a lot and it seems to go way beyond “volunteer at the homeless shelter at Christmas”, even though that’s a valuable thing to do. It also flies in the face of foodie trends (I mean “foodie” in a snobby, first-world-problems kind of a way) and also anoerxia/bulemia/thinspiration obsessions (also mostly first-world-problems).

    -Following Jesus 7 days a week. What does Christian faithfulness look like in sales and retail? In administrative office work? In endless data entry at a desk job 8 hours a day, 5 days a week? What does it NOT look like? How can regular people avoid their lives turning into an Arthur Miller production?

    -Plagiarism/academic honesty. Why is it important?

    -A book review of John Piper’s Bloodlines.

    -Bible-reading, prayer, and corporate worship. These three things are listed in multiple places as the habits of people who are seeking to closely follow God. What do they look like in a regular schedule? Is there anything missing?

    • reneamac says:

      These are… unsurprisingly… great questions.

      I think you’d have to include the longstanding (Southern?) tradition in the church of bringing meals to those in one’s local church family who are suffering as well as “Pot Luck” or “Covered Dish” gatherings. Now granted, bringing someone a meal is certainly not the same thing as sharing a meal with them. Eating together is kind of an equalizer, isn’t it?

      Following Jesus is in the small things. The first thing that comes to mind in regard to the jobs you listed (one of which I have!) is attitude: how one treats coworkers and customers. The second thing that comes to mind is excellence: doing one’s job faithfully and well. The Death of a Salesman makes me think of how important it is to see the bigger picture, the Kingdom of God. Caroline J Simon’s book, A Disciplined Heart is helpful in thinking about how to see and relate to others (ie. coworkers and customers) in this kind of Creation-Fall-Redemption, Kingdom of God way. And it’s hard. There are no easy answers or permanent fixes… ie. Now that I have this tool/method, I’ll never be depressed about my job again!

      Are you asking about academic honesty because it seems no one cares about it?

      I’d bet my pink and grey stripped socks Byron Borges will oblige you. 🙂

      Ah, spiritual disciplines. In my never humble opinion, they never look the same for everyone so all the books on them are inevitably frustrating for most of their readers. I wonder if taking advantage of one of the many wonderful Bible (reading plans/devotionals) apps during lunch or something wouldn’t be helpful in achieving the above recommendations about attitude and diligence.

      As you’re thinking about these things, I hope you’ll keep us in the loop… Perhaps on that wonderful blog of yours… 🙂

      • My latest thought on the meal-sharing thing is something Nick Perrin (NT scholar at Wheaton; former research aid to NTWright) wrote in Jesus the Temple (he’s in my small group, so I have to read his book, right?), about how Jesus giving food the poor was not only a social-boundaries breaker; he was actually “forgiving their debts” in way. The poor at that time would spend what little they had on food, and Jesus giving it to them when they couldn’t reciprocate not only speaks volumes about the gifts that he gives and his generosity, but that he was providing them with the possibility of further financial freedom. There are almost always layers to what Jesus does, so I wouldn’t reduce the importance of meal-sharing to this, but I think it’s something that’s been generally missed in the interpretation of this part of his ministry.

        Perrin and Wright I think are both fans of Jubilee… debt forgiveness for the purpose of the possibility of financial freedom. Beyond this application, the wheels are turning for me to think through other ways we can mimic this aspect of his ministry in our lives.

  4. Adam Jones says:

    Tithing. What’s the deal?

    Demonology and demonic mysticism.

    That Adam guy you are friends with is handsome. How did he get to be so gorgeous?

    How can the Cowboys establish a running game?

    How should we interpret Paul’s words when it sounds like he’s giving an opinion?

    Cats are better than dogs, so why do some people still have dogs?

    How many roads must a man walk down before they call him a man?

    What can churches do to impact their communities instead of just hiding inside their walls and be apart from them? (And is it all that wrong to be apart from society in the first place?)

    • reneamac says:

      At best (and I really do mean that… I don’t think tithing is bad per se) I think tithing is a convenient way to give, so we latched on to it though there’s no theological/hermeneutical basis to do so. At worst it’s a convenient way to forget to “give generously” (Deut 15:10; Ps 37:21; and potentially, Rom 12:8, though that is talking about those with the “spiritual gift” of giving—not that I’m entirely sure what that means).

      Yikes. Sooo unqualified. (I’ve been going to an Evangelical Anglican church since the beginning of the summer, and right now the topic in the adult biblestudy is angels and fallen angels. It’s so wonderful to be in a theology class on Sunday morning. But I still can’t answer your question. 😉 )

      He married a girl named Christine.

      Maybe they should all fracture a rib or two. It sure seems to have put a fire under Romo.

      That depends on whether you like his opinion or not. No, seriously, that’s a great question. What passages are you thinking of particularly?

      Because dogs jump on you and smell bad and eat your food and lick you incessantly… Oh wait, what was the question?

      7

      Stuff like what Engage is doing tonight is great, largely because it makes sense in relation to where that ministry is geographically centered. The church I grew up in runs a highly popular ESL ministry, various members volunteer at the local Crisis Pregnancy Center as well at the local public schools through their mentor programs, and AWANA consists of largely unchurched children. And again, these ministries make sense for that church because of the neighborhood in which it is oriented. [They do other things as well, but these are the things (that I’m aware of) that happen on a regular basis.] I don’t think it’s okay to be a practical separatist (by which I mean one who lives in a christian ghetto: only ever engaging with “christian” talk radio or music, only reading “christian” books and novels, etc.). Like you’re always saying, even the monastics who are regularly accused of being completely cloistered rarely were.

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