Saturday, May 07, 2005

A Positive View

I went to my friend’s CD release party tonight, and as he was sharing the background of the CD’s title, it helped me gel some of my thoughts of late. The band is Asherstreets, and their CD is called “Dandellium”. (check them out at Anyway, the background behind the title, is the question, “what are you spreading in life?”

I have to admit I am kind of a half glass empty kind of guy. I know I have always had a critical voice, and as of late I have wondered if all my criticism is helpful in the world. I think we need to take a critical look at ourselves and our culture, but to what extent? I fear I might be spreading poison with my critical voice. Ultimately I just want to be someone who loves people, and loves God. I am amazed by my people like my wife, who are always filled with joy and love.

While things are not perfect, I do not think they are as bad as I tend to make them. Ideals are good, but they are also dangerous. For an ideal is not necessarily to be achieved, but more the mark that we strive for. There is always room for growth and improvement.

As evangelicals, we tend to view the world in a negative light. We take a particular harsh view towards humanity, unless of course someone is a fellow evangelical. Except even God does not take a harsh view towards humanity. We tend to take the view that there is nothing redeemable about a person, unless they have Christ. However, God looks at us, and does see something redeemable. That is why he redeems us. He saw the worth we have, and with joy took on shame to reconcile us to Him. The Bible does present both sides, in that our wickedness makes us totally unworthy of Him; this is not a contradiction though. While as wicked sinners we are unworthy of a perfect being such as God. However, He still sees something worth dying for in us.

God has a positive view towards our situation, and has bought the opportunity to reform us with His own blood. We too need to see the good that shines bright amongst the darkness. I am praying for a change of heart, a step away from cynicism and taking a step towards nourishment and encouragement.

I think criticism is too often born out of a spirit of having to be right. I am not saying we should stop looking at things through a critical eye, but not at the expense of the goodness. We need to question, we need to think. However, I do not want to be remembered as someone who was always right. I want to be remembered as someone who loved God, and loved people. I want to spread hope and love, and the message of redemption.

Philippians 4:8 “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable-- if anything is excellent or praiseworthy-- think about such things.” (NIV)

1 comment:

mjonthemove said...

Hey Joe,
Thanks for sharing. Your space here on the Eeen-ternet is visceral. It shows great conflict and intensity, and I appreciate that. I miss you, friend. I have to say being in a Presbyterian, loosely-based on liturgy church on the West Coast has done well for me.

I'm involved with passionate people who want to share joy and love, and not just moral correctness or their perceptions of moral correctness. It's weird for me to relate to christians this well. You know this. Sarah and I talk about Milwaukee all the time. How is it doing? How are things on your end with Sherman Park? Or. Michelle's job? or seminary? I haven't had a chance to grab your ear in a while. Maybe I'll call you tomorrow night around 11pm your time. Is that cool?