Saturday, July 09, 2011

Spiritual Nomads

I recently had a conversation with a woman who seems to have been bouncing around the Body. She started out Lutheran, then attended several popular charistmatic churches in our area, then sojourned among the Baptists, then then Presbyterians, and now is hanging out with us. Why does this happen? She became upset with doctrine at some places, upset with divine laughter and "slaying in the spirit" at another place, at dispensational dismissal of the charismatic gifts  at another place, upset with the pastor at another place, and at lack of fellowship at another.

I wonder how long she'll sojourn with us?

Every tradition has its distinctive doctrine. Christian sub-groups foster their identity through the cultivation of distinctive doctrine. Not only do they have a distinctive take on this doctrine, but they also place a distinctive emphasis on it. The unique gift that each group offers the church universal is its distinct doctrinal emphasis. Yet, the temptation of each tradition is to turn their distinctive doctrine into a trump card that subjects every other Christian doctrine to its service. The challenge for each tradition is to offer their gift to others while at the same time reformulating their doctrine in light of the whole Christian faith.
 --John L. Drury

That is part of the challenge of each tradition. It is the challenge for each Christian to decide what part of the garden they will plant their seed, and stay there long enough for their plant to bear fruit.

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