Saturday, March 24, 2018

FOLLOWING JESUS OVER ROCKY GROUND



Dear Reader,

Possibly you've been confused by postings you’ve read in this blog? You’ve seen me commenting on politics, society, economics and faith. I can understand that you might well have wondered: “What right does Darrell have to comment in this way on all this stuff?"

Well, I’ve an answer. It provides PERFECT SUPPORT for my approach to blogging. I want to share with you that on ASH WEDNESDAY, 2018, twenty three American Christian leaders (they call themselves “elders” probably because of their average age) met in retreat and fashioned a “Confession of Faith in Time of Crisis.” (Click the link.) I'll call it the Ash Wednesday Confession.

The elders speak of perilous, polarizing times: a dangerous crisis of moral and political leadership. They continue: “We believe the soul of the nation and the integrity of faith are now at stake.” “It is time to be followers of Jesus before anything else. . . .” They offer six affirmations of faith and reject six practices that threaten the soul of the nation. One might add, “Soul of the world.”

When I read their Confession on March 22 I shared the link immediately with a colleague in Christian ministry. I’ve known this “elder” for decades. He stated that he was just blown away by the Confession. And he vowed to message an elder of his own denomination to ask her to add her own name to the list of signers.

I hope you’ll be as grateful as he for the Ash Wednesday Confession. We agreed that it’s parallel to the stance of the Confessing Church in Germany in the 1930s and 1940s. (Read about the Confessing Church here.)

So, all of you, the Confession will guide me, and I want you to join in affirming the “Confession of Faith in a Time of Crisis” as a guide to your own thinking and action. 

If you’re a priest, pastor, or Christian teacher, please share the Confession with your faith community. As my friend suggested, “Forget your Sunday sermon. Instead, just read the ‘Confession’ from your pulpit.” That applies to preachers, but if you're not one of those, what's your pulpit? Be creative. Any of us can post the link on a blog or other social media: your Facebook page or Twitter for example. Here’s that link again:

The Confession is the clearest appeal for faithful Christian action I’ve encountered since my younger years. Now I’m an elder too, and therefore I write on faith, society and economics as  I do in this blog.

Whether you’re young, middle-aged or an elder, please keep reading weekly. And always feel free to comment: let’s have some dialogue. For you, what is the way forward over our rocky, dangerous trail? 

Does the Ash Wednesday Confession help you as much as it helps me?

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