Sunday, March 08, 2009

Book #12...

A Christianity Worth Believing
Doug Pagitt

This book gets me thinking. How much do I currently believe about my faith just because everyone else around me believed it? How much do I actually know for myself? How much do I live and hold on to because I want to, and not just because of my upbringing?

How often do I question? How often do I search for answers? How often do I dig into life and God?

The answer? Not nearly enough.

I think my favorite part of this book was when Pagitt introduced me to the term of "contrarian". Now, I will be the first to say that I'm not usually one to rock the boat. In fact, I probably wish I was more rebellious that I actually am. Not just so I can stick out or be "relevant", but so that I can cause myself, and others, to think more.

As Doug describes a contrarian, I found myself nodding along.

"But to me, being a contrarian means holding out hope when others have stopped hoping. It means looking past the limitations and imagining the possibilities. It means rethinking ideas that have been ignored or dismissed in the past." (7)

I don't want to be the one who loses hope. I don't want to stop thinking and rethinking. I'm not satisfied with the same old thing repeating itself over and over and over again.

I once got told that I was too pessimistic. I've struggled with that label. Maybe to some extent it's true, but I tend to think that a pessimist gives up on hope. A pessimist gives up on dreaming. They give up on thinking and rethinking. They give up on what could be. They give up on what needs to be done or what should be done.

I don't want to be the one who gives up.

And why? This pretty much sums it up:

"We are convinced that when we stop asking questions, when we turn away from a set of facts or an idea screaming to be considered, that's when things really fall apart. We are not trying to cause trouble; we're trying to stay out of it." (8)

I'd like to be the one who asked too many questions, rather than the one who regrets asking any.

That's my Sunday ramble for you.


jonathan said...

Loved the Sunday ramble.
While Pagitt and friends have their critics, I've really found myself gravitating towards their books - largely due to the theme of hope.
Have you read much Brian McLaren?

Knotter said...

i just recently read "everything must change" but i didn't really care for it. i have a couple more on the shelves that i intend to get to.

i just find that these guys make me think a little more, which is probably a good thing.