June 8th, 2010

BIG PICTURE: Met with Alick. When I read my journal entries about “The Silence of the Heart” where I described how pissed-off the book made me, he laughed really loud and slapped his knee. “That’s what it did for me too!” I read him all my journal entries regarding the book and he said…”That’s why I gave it to you…to provoke you, to get you thinking outside the box. You passed the test!”

Very funny.

I read him portions of my hike journal and he was, as always very encouraging, telling me that I’m on the right track, right where I should be, that I’m special, that he’s proud of me. He also told me that my “fear” of having to “patiently endure” various things will get harder and harder to deal with as I get older.

Yay.

CLASS WORK: I’m enjoying the hermeneutics course. Confirming that a conservative approach to scripture and a liberal approach to the promptings of the Holy Spirit could, when properly blended, make for one exciting ride. I MIGHT get done with this class this week.

READ/RITE/REFLECT; MBE: I’m 3/4 of the way through it and waiting for something other than continued cheer leading and boasting cleverly disguised as “illustration”. The book had promise in the beginning, and I’m grateful that there were parts which inspired me (despite my shame at being movable by stuff like that), but I’m losing patience with it. there’s only so many ways you can tell someone:

1) Trust God

2) It’s going to be hard

3) Trust God anyway (insert self-aggrandizing anecdote here)

Actually, now that I reflect again on what I read, there WAS an interesting train of thought in this reading: The author very strongly makes the case that you must keep your “paying” customers separate from those who are depending on your benevolence. He diplomatically describes the difference between those who are from the main stream who are PAYING to use whatever service your business provides and how they will not want to be “mixing” with the smelly, inconvenient and bothersome poor.

I have thought about this many times when imagining a coffee house of cafe where we want poor people to be welcome. This brings up a central philosophical issue for me. I agree that having people around that the world considers “un-lovely” is bad business. But we’re still the church, and Jesus made a few things pretty clear, among them, how we should treat the poor. So what do we do? Do we follow an “ideals path” and say, “Tough! we’re going to do this all together or not at all!” and by doing so doom the business?  Or do we follow the explicit advice of someone who’s already done this and clearly says: “Don’t try to mix the two groups…it won’t work!”

I’m truly perplexed.

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