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The Wrap Up – Part 2

My last post was five months ago.  You know, the one that I called “Part 1” and promised a “Part 2” follow-up post?

So, Seth, what gives?

Well… ever feel like you’ve bitten off more than you can chew?  Or that you have so much to say about something, but don’t want to publish a novel on your blog since no one would probably read it?  Yeah, I know the feeling.

So, check this out:  I make a promise to my readers to compile and discuss (in a single post, mind you) all the evidences that I believe exist for the Christian faith.  Yeah yeah, I hear you skeptics chuckling out there — I can hear you thinking, “Well, that should be a short article!”  Go ahead, have your moment… I’ll give you a minute or two to enjoy your cleverness…. (more…)

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Well, It’s Official…

I’m officially a father — to a beautiful, healthy boy.  The past three days have been a whirlwind, as I’m sure many of you know from experience!  Though my preoccupation with my family affairs has not kept me from thinking of this community and those I’ve come to love and admire in it — I really do think we have a special thing going here, and the caliber of people whom this blog attracts continues to astound me, truly.  I am loath to have to take a break from engaging with you all, and perhaps I shall still be able to post here and there — though I find it difficult to type with a little one in my hands, I certainly have much time to read and think. (more…)

I’m back!

Howdy fellow recovering intellectuals!  My apologies for being so scarce here lately — all of my theatrical endeavors have finally concluded!  It’s been awhile since I’ve done a play, and boy I forgot how taxing it can be!  For the past three months or so I’ve felt like life has just sort of been happening to me, and it’ll be so nice to get on the front-side of things again — also, I can devote more energy into getting the home ready for the baby.  (Did I mention my wife was expecting??  Our first, a son 😀 So happy!)  Perhaps I’m getting too old for this theatre thing!

In the meantime, I have been reading the excellent comments and responses that you all have been leaving here — I have my work cut out for me!  There are some great points being made.  I look forward to diving back in!  Thanks for your patience with me.  Talk to you all soon!

All the Hurting People

My wife is currently pregnant with our first child (our son), and while on the whole it has been a glorious experience, there is always a measure of growing pains that accompany any big change in life stage.  Our little one hasn’t even come yet, and already changes are occurring — in our plans, our lifestyle, my wife’s body, etc.  From what I’ve learned over the years about the physiological differences between males and females, I’d imagine most guys can relate to my habitual knee-jerk reaction, when a loved one is stressed or in pain, to want to “fix the situation”:  Something’s wrong?  Here I come to the rescue!  And I’d wager that a large portion of those guys (especially if I sampled from those who have been in a relationship with a woman) will be able to identify with the evident fact (learned through trial-and-error) that sometimes situations can’t be “fixed” by us, and essentially just need to work themselves out.  I’ve made many a situation worse by trying to put on my tool-belt and go to work; it makes it difficult, though, to see someone you care about so deeply in pain, and feeling powerless to help them.

This blogging experience, somewhat surprisingly, has garnered similar feelings in me — though I suppose I shouldn’t have been surprised.  In reading what you have to say on this blog and perusing your own, I’ve come to care deeply for many of you.  I feel your pain when you talk about the circumstances that led to your deconversions; I mourn the inability of your local church to connect with you, meet your needs, and offer you sound, healing doctrine; I burn with anger when I read about hurtful, judgmental, bigoted, and legalistic words being given to you by church leaders and parishioners when they should have been offering words of love, reconciliation, grace, and the mercy of Christ as presented in the Gospels.  (I considered putting in some links to examples of these, but did not want to risk offense or misrepresentation — you know who you are, I suppose.)  I know all too well the disjointedness of the Western church, the equally harmful extremes of Pharisaical legalism and hedonistic liberalism — and it grieves me.  Frankly, hearing some of your stories makes me want to go back in time and punch some people in the face. (more…)

I hope I’m wrong

Before typing a single word of this post, I knew it was going to be a raw one.

I hope my readers don’t mind a little personal transparency — but even if some of them did, it would probably go to show that this may not be the place for them anyway.  I set out on this blogging endeavor hoping to foster a community of individuals who could handle honest, forthright theological discussion without feeling the need to score rhetorical points or use manipulative debate tactics to twist the truth or evade it completely — where people can be open about their own doubts and questions, can admit that they don’t have all the answers without fear of losing the respect of others, can have at least one place in this online world where people are more important than ideas, and ideas are more important than winning.  So, bound up in that vision is this concept of being real — and part of being real is being willing to share at least one real part of you, unadulterated, without makeup, warts and all.  And since I got us into this mess, I suppose I should lead by example.

So here’s my confession, and I imagine it has the potential to alienate people on both sides of the God issue: I hope I’m wrong about God. (more…)

Why do I believe? – My testimony (the short version)

I’m going to take a brief reprieve from the onerous “Meaning of Life” series to answer an important question asked by Arkenaten.  Since the question was somewhat buried in the Rules section of all places, I thought I’d devote a post to it, because I imagine it’s a question that will come up a lot:

Why do you believe?

Now, in spite of Arkenaten’s slight misgivings that my answer may involve too much metaphysics and philosophical ramblings, my answer is actually much less technical than that — for it’s a question that’s best answered, I think, by telling my story rather than giving a litany of intellectual reasons.  (Also, since among the aforementioned misgivings was also one that involved my tendency toward prolixity… I will try to be brief.) (more…)