Saturday, April 09, 2005

Not your garden variety movie

Last night, my wife and I watched Garden State. For anyone that has not seen this movie, it is truly a beautiful cinema experience. It draws on so many emotions; fear, rejection, anger, joy, confusion, reconciliation, and love. Garden State is one of the best things I have seen in a while, and I am thankful Zach Braff made it.

There was a scene in this film that made me laugh harder than I have in a long time. The main character and the girl he fancies are at his friends house in the back yard. His friend has a bow and arrow. His friend shoots the arrow, which by the way has a flaming tip, straight up in the air, and the aerial view shows the three of them scrambling around in the yard, trying to avoid being hit by the sailing flamed weapon. I laughed so hard and Alison, couldn't figure out why I couldn't stop. At a slow point in the movie, I told her a story from my high school days.

When I was in high school, a friend of mine were in his backyard and his dad and his drinking buddies were standing around looking at one of the guys' new Bear compound bow. They had been drinking and one of the guys decided to do the same brilliant thing the character in the movie does, shoot an arrow straight up in the air. The problem was, there were about ten of us and we were all in a significantly smaller backyard. Luckily, no one was hurt, but the hilarity of the memory remains, eight grown men and two teenagers scrambling for cover because some middle aged guy with too much Michelobe decided to show off his new toy.

Needless to say, this movie brought back many memories from high school, of going home and catching up with old friends. I am sure I will have more to say about this movie later.

Saturday, April 02, 2005

A Hungry Church

I began seminary a little over a year ago and at times of great frustration and weariness, it never fails that I am somehow brought back to the land of the living by a moment of encouragement, a word, an idea. Affirmation as to why I am here save the day once again. Friday in class, one of my favorite professors said something quite remarkable. She said this:

"The church is starving to death with a storage room full of food."

I thought of how if you were to ask the church herself about how she feels about this statement, she would deny and wouldn't even understand how someone could think this.

I believe that the American church is starving and doesn't even know it. The church, in her present state may look healthy and full of life, yet underneath the exterior of great buildings and landscaping, she is emaciated, gaunt and dying. She has seemed to stray far from what Christ has intended her to be. Self help sermons and programs are all that people are receiving from the pulpits. The Word of God, the message of Christ, and the story of how He has redeemed His people are now absent and virtually non-existent.

My professor went on to say that the leaders of the church are the only ones with the key to the storage rooms full of food. The burden of feeding this starving people falls on the shoulders of us seminarians, missionaries, leaders, poets and wordsmiths, artists, laymen and laywomen.

Let's call a church gathering and meet at the storage room and unlock the door.

Friday, April 01, 2005

Here we go

Funny, I set this blog up in January and am just now sitting down to write. One friend who visited called it a "non-blog" or "un-blog," something like that. I have been putting it off for a number of reasons. Another friend finally told me I needed to get something up, a quote, an intro, something. Here we are.

As a seminary student, many of my thoughts are analyzed and critiqued. I suppose this is why I have been hesitant to begin. But I consider myself a sojourner, one that is on a journey, striving toward something, other than graduation. These things I am moving toward are not always clear, but there is something compelling about the journey itself. I think of Frodo and the Ring, and how he knew he had a journey before him, yet he had no idea what he would encounter. This is not an attempt to let others read my thoughts that I think they would find interesting. It is an attempt, however, to be a part of this journey I have embarked upon.

here we go...