Saturday, May 29, 2010
One of the things that I come across so often as a pastor is people (Christian and not alike) who are plagued by anxiety, fear and uncertainty over how things are going and will turn out. It is the disease of our time. Now, one solution is to take up fly-fishing (yesterday I caught five trout on the Test during the most glorious mayfly hatch I have ever witnessed.) On the other hand, you might like to listen to this excellent talk called 'The Age of Anxiety' by Beau Hughes (12.06.09) and as a follow up to read Finding God by Larry Crabb.
Larry Crab is seemingly this weeks man. A pal mentioned he was working his way through the works of Crabb who is the go-to guy on matters counselling. So, having been fishing yesterday I spotted 'Finding God' on my friend's sons bookshelf and borrowed it. He won't mind, I'm sure, he is in Australia and it will be back before he knows it's gone, however he does read the blog so maybe he might find out I nicked it! Seriously, there is much in this short and easy-read but one thing that particularly jumped out was a section on the practice in contemporary parenting of molly-coddling children.
"When parents place a premium on their children's happiness (and regard affirmation and advantages as the most important provisions the world can give to insure happiness), children are strengthened in their inclination to value self more than others. The world exists for them. Satisfaction of desires within them, to which they become increasingly sensitive, becomes their final value. They then set out on a lifelong mission of deciding how most effectively to use their world to realize their goal of comfort and joy" [Page 28]
Not only have we done this in parenting but also with the gospel as this excellent post observes. You would do well to consider which of the two gospels you read described is the one you signed up for and which is preached in your church (sadly all too often it is the first and I am sure I have on occasion preached it myself). So, if you want to become more resilient and prepare yourselves for the inevitable trouble coming your way you would do well to read 'Finding God' and reflect on its implications for how you approach life and living. It will be time extremely well spent.