Getting Off the Certainty Highway
April 21, 2013
What happens when you decide to get off the heaven versus hell expressway? You pull into a village for a bit of conversation and coffee. After a bit of Googling, you can find conclaves of holy hipsters gathering wherever espresso might be brewing. No hell. But after one theological circle jerk too many, you tire of a tattooed theology. You stroll down the road less travelled leads to nowhere. Next thing you know, you’re listening to Springsteen’s “Wreck on the Highway” wondering how you can find your keys lost amid mounds of Jesus junk.
But what if you stopped with the Christian clichés. Love doesn’t win even when it’s been repackaged in cooler clothes with Coldplay. And candles. Sprinkled with Žižek dust and other forms of Missional magic. Accept that your keys are lost. Put down that roadmap pointing you toward signs of certainty. Point your browser toward the Lasting Supper with David Hayward aka The Naked Pastor. Here you can join Christians, Muslims, nones, agnostics, atheists, Buddhists and others in a safe place to be.
David reflects on why he created this online community: “In my experience, the biggest changes in my life and thinking occurred when I realize I might be wrong. Letting go of comfort and certainty can be very traumatic. For me, this feels like a radical tumbling over the waters in a kayak. The church doesn’t prepare people for this trauma of real life. For me, the cross and the resurrection represent the metaphor of the death of certainty and the renewal of uncertainty. Everything gets held up and questioned with an open minded heart. By going through this crucible we can experience new life by going through the uncertainty and press into the question. The question is the answer. Come all you who question and this community will keep you restless. But you will find you are not alone.
What questions of faith do you struggle with. Write them down. Do you have a community or person with whom you could share your questions? Can you simply live the question?
You can read more on this subject here.
(Yes, I know I am very critical of commercialized Christianity. But here David is offering his decades of service as a pastor at a very low price, so he can cover the basic costs of running this. Also, he wants to ensure that those who participate have a stake in forming this community. This is definitely not an author/speaker pay-to-play program.)
George E. Hilty
Oh so post modern! Oh so hip! Oh so snarky! Helpful?
Not very helpful. No offense to Revs. Brock and Hayward, but I don’t need to hear that kind of talk from the clergy. I get enough of it from my doubting and nonbelieving friends. Maybe this makes me an old fogey or a wuss or a clueless churchlady, but I (and I suspect I’m not the only one) need help, support, and encouragement.
When I first read this, I thought I must have accidentally logged into my Unitarian website (Quest for Meaning on Patheos. Lots of good posts and you know what to expect.)
Is it just me?
Martha, one of the reasons we have various essayists is to speak to the various voices of faith in our culture. A reality of faith and belief is that more and more people, especially those young adults, consider themselves to belong to no faith tradition, but also have a sense of spirituality and belief. Becky (who is not ordained) has written extensively in this area. And, what speaks to one group may leave another group a bit dry. Thank you for your feedback. Also, I (Laurie) simply post the essays each day, and the author of each essay is noted at the bottom of the reflection.