The idea of 7 Quick Takes Friday comes from blogger Jennifer Fulwiler, who hosts it weekly at her site, Conversion Diary.
It's Controversy Week on mosaicsynapse — welcome!
"So Pam," you're thinking, "you're an amateur theologian. What do you think of the whole Jesus-returning-on-May-21 thing?"
Well, thank you for asking, though I'm more of an armchair theologian... but close enough. If we were talking face-to-face, be assured there would be a good bit of eye-rolling on my part. I honestly find certain media-hogging factions of Christianity a little embarrassing.
This isn't the first time this has happened, of course. And my standard response is something I learned early on in my faith journey: Jesus told His followers not to try to predict, but to keep watch and be ready at all times.
But Jon Acuff has done a much better job talking about this topic, with a much lighter hand.
And while we're on the subject of controversy, Monday I reviewed a book on a controversial topic.
Despite what some might think, I actually don't like the kind of tension that comes with controversy. (Yes, I post links to some articles from progressive Christian magazines Sojourners and Relevant, both here and on Facebook; I appreciate the way they challenge my thinking. But I am not, as one friend called me, a pot-stirrer. Except when I'm making risotto.)
So when the post garnered a new commenter whose thoughts were expressed in a more adversarial tone than I'm used to, I started to get a little uncomfortable. Which didn't make much sense, really. It's not like I didn't know the topic's ability to draw the ire of people at both extremes.
And that whole line of thinking put me in mind of this clip from a favorite movie (specifically the scene that begins at 2:38):
It's not that I want to keep the blog free of controversy. There are actually several topics I'd like to explore here that can tend to be somewhat polarizing. It's a matter of figuring out how to write about them in a way that's honest, yet welcomes questions and differences of opinion; it's also a matter of figuring out how to respond to comments that are off-topic or ranting or rude.
Also, true confession: I like to be liked, and I don't enjoy thinking that some people might not like me. Evidently the blog brings out my inner insecure 7th grader.
And she's caught between the desire for high pageviews and the reality of harsh comments.
So I like it when people are nice to me. Who doesn't, really?
But there are some difficult subjects to talk about, and it's tough trying to figure out how to discuss them with grace, and not just niceness.
Bill Mounce does a good job of distinguishing the two in this article. (And yes, he quotes some controversial Bible passages. Fair warning.)
Speaking of controversy: Narnia.
Yeah, that word is enough to get me fired up. I love the books, and I'm not happy with the movies. I haven't seen Voyage of the Dawn Treader yet, and I may not. It's my favorite book of the series. I know some key scenes have been changed, and not (in my opinion) for the better.
One of the publishers our area just started a blog, and an early post reviews The Way into Narnia: A Reader's Guide by Peter Schakel. The book looks great, but I was immediately struck by reviewer Rachel Bomberger's position on key Narnia issues (such as the aforementioned movies and the... shudder... series reordering of 1994).
And when I say "struck by," I mean "her opinion is the same as mine." Which means, of course, she's wonderful and right. Doesn't it?
OK, enough controversy. How about something adorable?
I found this video on NPR's All Songs Considered:
Happy Friday, friends! Find a noncontroversial way to bless someone this weekend!