Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Oh Americainty!

Oh MY!

I recently coined the term "Americanity" in conversation with a friend. I was looking for a term to apply to the faux-christianity that seems so apparent through our culture. Where people call down on a benevolent mystery-god who will take care of them, and reward them in the afterlife for having been a good person. This god is always on your side in a fight, cares that you have a lexus with leather and seat warmers, and doesn't really care if you don't care about the homless, widows or orphans. He is appeased becasuse we put the phrase "In God we trust" on our money, and by our self restraint in traffic, when we don't chase down that jerk who cut us off and beat the living crap out of him--even though he really deserved it. The god of Americanity is faintly aquainted with the God of the Bible, and has little use for the name of Jesus (unless you've hit your thumb with a hammer). But the gospel? Oh my goodness no. To the god of Americanity, the gospel of Christ is devisive and judgmental. It calls people to actually put something else before themselves, and that can't be good, right?

But now I see that I had only half the picture. Americanity is coming into sharper focus. I realize that there are what we might call liberal and conservitives in the religion of Americanity--and the conservatives have published their own version of the Bible! Yes, the christian nation of America is here to save the world; but first we must save ourselves.

This does bother me, I hope you know. I've never been a big supporter of hyper-patriotism/supreme nationalism. I love quite a bit about our country, am grateful for the freedoms I enjoy, and hold the men and women who fought and who died for those freedoms in high regard. They deserve more than respect. But all this still comes in second to my true nationality, as a citizen in the kindom of Christ. If Jesus was concerned about policial supremacy, he really missed his chance 2000 years ago. Bummer.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

book list?

I thought about posting the list of books-to-be-read-pile I mentioned yesterday, but instead found this interesting widget on my friend's blog that lists your books, and separates them between "read", "to read" and "currently reading", and even lets you write a review. We'll give it a try....

Monday, May 25, 2009


Well, the application is long since turned in, and as may be expected, all manner of self doubt is now vying for my attention. So what to do? Focus elsewhere, I guess. I've pulled a stack of books out in an effort to finally get through my purchased-with-the-intent-to-read reading list (close to the top of course, is my beloved Don Miller; whom, it should be noted, I shall continue to read aloud--although I no longer have an audience. Don Miller is just better read aloud.) I've pulled out an un-finished Bible study, and a couple others that I may soon start.

All manner of avoidance aside, I still dwell on the persistent thought that I am not good enough to go to seminary. Not smart enough, not talented enough, too uneducated in all things theological; mundane rather than profound. No number of Don Miller's lovely chaper/essays will convince me otherwise, no matter how funny they are read aloud.

So, it's back to plan A. Pray. Trust. Hold on with both hands. Cause either way, I'm not going to make it through this thing alive based on myself alone.