...self care is never a selfish act- it is simply good stewardship of the only gift I have, the gift I was put on earth to offer to others. Anytime we can listen to true self and give it the care it requires, we do so not only for ourselves but for the many others whose lives we touch.

Parker J. Palmer, Let Your Life Speak

Monday, July 21, 2008

What's Simple about Being Christian?

That's what Tom Wright addresses in his 237 page volume, Simply Christian.

What I appreciated about the book:
  • The metaphors used and explained, i.e., baptism (pp. 212 and following).
  • The positive view of the Old Testament/Israel as informing our reading of the New Testament/Jesus, not the other way around.
  • The centering of Christian faith on gratitude as response for what God has done. (p. 209)
  • The discussion on the New Creation was excellent. **
What I did not appreciate:
  • Started slowly; length. You would expect a book with simple in the title to be briefer and "simpler."
  • Written by clergyperson for church persons?
  • No Index was provided, this aspect took away from the reading.
**"Resurrection doesn't mean going to heaven when you die." (p.218) and "...God did for Jesus at Easter what he is going to do for the whole creation." (p.236). At death, there is an interim period when we are with Christ (call it heaven), but after that interim, a new bodily life is given within God's new creation, the new heaven and earth.

Simply Christian lends it self to a group study/discussion of 6-8 weeks and could be used with a variety of audiences, probably more with groups of seasoned believers.


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If you want a formula for making the best of the less-than-perfect and making the most of what you have been given, then begin to compare your lot to what you were before you were born, and it will empower you with wonder every time. John Claypool

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