Friday, June 29, 2007
Tuesday, June 26, 2007
Sunday, June 17, 2007
Don't be angry ... Most people live inside a cage of their own expectations. It makes them feel safe. The world's a frightening place full of glory and wonder and, as we've both discovered, danger. Flying isn't for everyone.
This comment speaks to the tendency we all have to create cages of our own that protect us from anything different or new. It is the cause of much fundamentalism and sectarianism. As Christians, we need to take the risk of "flying" and facing the dangers and glories of reality even if it means having to modify what we believe or expect.
The Sea of Trolls is a thoroughly enjoyable yarn that is highly informative about times and places that existed long ago but still have an influence on the way we think today. It should provide lots of opportunities for parents and teachers to discuss religious belief, myths and legends, friendship and loyalty, the relationship of humans to nature, and the history of the time and place. I thank my teenage daughter for recommending it to me!
Monday, June 11, 2007
The nineteen minutes refers to the time that Peter, a student at Sterling High School, takes to move through his school killing and injuring a large number of students, sending shockwaves through the community. In a narrative alternating between 17 years earlier and the time following the shooting leading up to the trial, Picoult peels away layer after layer so that we come to understand how the shooting took place. In doing so, we are taken on the inner journey of the main characters so that we understand how, over many years, the horror of that nineteen minutes was in the making.
Jodi Picoult is a brilliant writer and, after a slight hiatus with her last novel, returns to her old form with a story that is as contemporary as today’s headlines. Grappling with major themes of justice, power, and the pain of being different, the story winds its way to the inevitable day and its sequel in court where a devastating finale will take your breath away. Nineteen Minutes is a story with extraordinary depth and power.
Saturday, June 02, 2007
- Why the Bible?
- Do I have to go to church?
- Do I have to sell God?
- Can Christianity be reduced to steps or stages?
- Does God speak outside the Bible?
- Is forgiveness real?
- What makes the Christian experience unique?
- Are Christians the morality police?
- Do good people go to hell?
- Does the Bible contradict evolution?
- Am I supposed to hate the world?
- Are there gay Christians?
- Is it wrong to take a job in a bar?
- Where is your God?
By "old school" we do not mean liberalism, fundamentalism, or evangelicalism but rather a set of specific attitudes, beliefs, and practices--and the subcultures in which they thrive--that emerged in the modern era and were defined by modern concerns. We use "old school" to refer to a conceptual mode of what is no longer an accurate representation of the biblical God within popular culture and "new school" to refer to the ideal solution based on Scripture. Our objective is to emphasize the importance of abandoning old-school errors, which most devout Christians agree needs to be done, and live out the new school implications. (pp. 11-12)