During the last few weeks I’ve been off my blog. As the saying goes, “There is a time to speak and a time to remain silent.” These days I’ve been in a time of listening and reflecting on experience.
Theology is indeed important. I once served a church where there was an active disdain for any ethos of theological reflection. The spirit at work in that community was one of hands on action. People did a lot of things in expression of their faith. Mission trips, work camps, paint-a-thons and serving meals at charity outlets were but some of their duties.
But when it came time to think, well who needs to think about doing? We already know what we should do. The need is to get busy with it, not sit and around and talk about it.
But there are times when wrestling with the nuances of theology is as important as wrestling with the soup tureens. Is torture a legitimate tool of interrogation? Many Christians seem to think so. Many Christians think otherwise. Many Christians think not. When we think about important things, the process has the potential to lead to important actions. So yes, theological reflection is very important. Thinking is a step in doing.
Otherwise, when we meet crisis we are easily drawn toward to the path of least resistance, expediency and the ends justify the means. Sometimes one needs to resist the flow of popular opinion in order to get at the truth of the matter at hand. That’s not always a pleasant prospect, nor does it always lead to happy outcomes. But truth, unlike beauty is not always in the eye of the beholder. Sometimes truth just is.
The challenge is getting to it, recognizing it, accepting it and then living it. And then, reflecting on it, keeping it sharp and fresh and relevant; which means doing the same for ourselves. One would think that that sort of process would be a vital part of what being church was all about.
Tell us what you think.
Take Care – John Mann