Random Thoughts

I’ve been thinking about a few things recently. I’d love it if you weighed in on your thoughts and experiences regarding these statements:

-If you’re not willing to sprint towards the most tension filled places in life, than you’re not a Christ-one no matter what you tell me.

[As a side note, a good friend of mine Dr. John Fuder, doesn't say Christian anymore. He says 'Christ-one' because that is what the early believers were known as - One's of Christ. It's the literal translation of Christian, and I love it]

-It’s so easy to just point the finger at the problems you see with the church. In fact, it’s a favorite past-time of many [national] Christian figures. Start pointing the finger at yourself and tirelessly work towards reconciliation. That is Kingdom; anything else is just backseat driving dribble.

-The fundamental dynamics of all conflicts are based on the right to be right as much as the inability to be wrong. It’s so hard to do because it’s not satisfying. Are you willing to be unsatisfied at the moment of greatest disconnect?

Much love.

www.themarinfoundation.org

About Andrew Marin

Andrew Marin is President and Founder of The Marin Foundation (www.themarinfoundation.org). He is author of the award winning book Love Is an Orientation (2009), its interactive DVD curriculum (2011), and recently an academic ebook titled Our Last Option: How a New Approach to Civility can Save the Public Square (2013). Andrew is a regular contributor to a variety of media outlets and frequently lectures at universities around the world. Since 2010 Andrew has been asked by the United Nations to advise their various agencies on issues of bridging opposing worldviews, civic engagement, and theological aspects of reconciliation. For twelve years he lived in the LGBT Boystown neighborhood of Chicago, and is currently based St. Andrews, Scotland, where he is teaching and researching at the University of St. Andrews earning his PhD in Constructive Theology with a focus on the Theology of Culture. Andrew's research centers on the cultural, political, and religious dynamics of reconciliation. Andrew is married to Brenda, and you can find him elsewhere on Twitter (@Andrew_Marin), Facebook (AndrewMarin01), and Instagram (@andrewmarin1).

  • Mrs T

    This might confuse some. What about those in abusive situations?

    I think if God calls you to something & you know He is calling you, yes, there may be tension. But He has called you to it.

    Some of us have had disfunctional relatives & need(ed) to get away. I don’t regret getting away at age 20, but there is still pain that occasionally crops up. [BTW, I'm 62!]
    Luv ya, Andrew! KUTGW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • http://www.loveisanorientation.com Andrew Marin

    Oh Mrs. T, such a good call! Thanks for bringing that up…

  • Corbin Franklin

    I love this “Christ-one” name for those who love Jesus. I’m a youth pastor and will definitely be using and encouraging all of my students to take on this title. Thanks Dr. Fuder via Andrew!

  • David

    Andrew, I’ve been thinking along these same lines lately. It’s much ‘easier’ in our society to point out the negative than look for the bright spots. In the church, at work, at home, in the media…etc. In fact, just think about how many television shows focus on death and decay. But literally, it’s easier to say negative things than positive ones. Did you know that only about 1/3 of all words in the English language that describe emotion are positive?

    I will pledge, with you, to point all fingers squarely at myself and start working on reconciliation. In fact, that’s pretty much my “new year’s resolution”.

  • http://www.casadeblundell.com/jonathan Jonathan Blundell

    I like this. Good stuff!
    In the past I’ve been quick to point out the flaws of others – especially the Church.
    My wife has done a good job of reminding me to clean up my act.
    Kinda hard to point fingers and say they’re judging when I’m doing the exact same thing to them.
    May we create spaces of grace for reconciliation with everyone.

    And love – Christ-One.. thanks!

  • http://thesimplepastor.blogspot.com/ Phil Whittall

    -If you’re not willing to sprint towards the most tension filled places in life, than you’re not a Christ-one no matter what you tell me.-

    Not so sure about that. It runs the risk of being pretty judgemental. I appreciate that this blog and the ministry it’s involved in is often one of conflict and tension, but for many people of sincere faith, conflict and tension are the last things they want to SPRINT towards. For most if they are brave enough to move in that direction, it’s haltingly, with stumbles and doubts and in need of much encouragement to press on. For many, in the challenges of each day by the time they get home, there’s no energy for sprinting but just enough to keep going.
    I’m all for activism, passion and challenge but we must be gracious to those who walk at a slower pace.

  • http://www.loveisanorientation.com Andrew Marin

    Phil – I definetly agree with what you said. There has to be room for everyone to work, walk, explore, etc at their own pace … whether that is a faster or slower pace. I have no problem with those moving at a slower pace, because it’s still movement. What is crawling to others might be sprinting to some. So that’s all good.

    But there has to be movement. There has to be transformation. There has to be active, intentional behaviors outside of the church walls however slow that might be. If there is none of that; a sedentary believer who thinks they deserve a pat on the back just because they believe; that is what I have a problem with. Too many have become too satisfied in their life and faith (or just satisfied in intellectualizing what they ‘know’ or can ‘explain’ what they should do instead of doing it), and that has caused one of the major problems in the church, and our faith’s relevance in culture today. I can’t take that anymore, and those people can’t convince me otherwise. Take it at your pace; that’s all good. But ‘pace’ is the key word. No movement is not acceptable. And for those that say they’re too busy; it’s too hard; they’re too tired, etc…fine; make that excuse to God on judgement day, not to me. I’ve got no judgements on that, I’m just trying to move the body in a peaceful, productive, just and humble fashion of living out this belief system as intentionally commited as possible. “Now go and do likewise.”

  • pm

    Intentionality as a mission statement makes sense when you work towards the goal of reconciliation. Racing towards tension when ill-equipped is a recipe for disaster. The balance between ‘movement’ and it’s opposite ‘doing-nothing’ is found in an honest evaluation. Read Luke 6:9 “Then said Jesus unto them, I will ask you one thing; Is it lawful on the sabbath days to do good, or to do evil? to save life, or to destroy [it]?” Jesus did not allow the legal-excuses to limit doing good, to save a life. He rejected excuses, made impossible challenges and revealed heavenly conversations. I believe one’s evaluation should be solidly based on the merits of one’s own capability and then, in direct proportion to your existing ability, give yourself whole-heartedly to the Lord of the Harvest. It’s ultimately in His Hands, but it’s ours to elevate and love in this world.


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