So this is one of the 50 books I want to read and blog on this year. It is a super easy read, probably one of the easiest for me this year. Given my son’s addiciton to all things Narnia and his desire to change his name to Peter and become a SpiderMan Knight…I read this book.
The first part of my reflection is this: “People who have not been in Narnia sometimes think that a thing cannot be good and terrible at the same time.” This is Lewis’ version of paraorthodoxy. A lot of what Lewis describes in this book has to do with understandings of the kingdom of God. Obvious parallel’s abound. Which brings me to today’s rant:
I am so sick hearing of people criticizing emerging churches and theologies by saying that they are not new – that they have been doing them since _______(fill in appropriately irrelevant period of time). This whole thing about Emergent is about recovering a gospel which is not so affected by modernism; it’s not about just being NEW! So, it’s a cultural process and just because you finger painted Jesus when you were in middle school, you are not somehow culturally hip and Emergent. In fact, culturally hip and Emergent are mutually exclusive – they are not the same. I think this is the basis for a lot of this criticism – people who are scared and feeling like if they are not emerging then they aren’t cool and will become irrelevant. All that to say – you don’t need to announce that you are emergent or that emergent is a fad or say anything abstract about postmodernism to try to undermine it. For me, I am a postmodern person who grew up in a postmodern environment – it’s not a bunch of intellectual abstractions to me; it’s family, it’s relationships, it’s Jesus. Just because I (or Emergent) am (is) intellectually wired that doesn’t mean that my (Emergent’s) relationship with God is intellectual. (breathe!)
The second part of my reflections is how easily the culture industry is having their way with the church. We will sell our souls to any loser who makes a movie that has anything to do with religion. It’s as if we don’t even notice that if you want to make an extra $100,000,000 for your movie you should market it through churches. Give pastors free sermons that interact with it and the people will go out in unthinking droves. I am so scared of the implications of this that I can’t even imagine how badly we need to think this through. I’m not against Narnia, or DaVinci Code or Passion of the Christ – I just think that we need to be a little more aware of how Hollywood is whoring out the body of Christ.