Thursday, October 6, 2005

Day 4

Almost Done
I’m not sure – but my expectations were probably too high. I knew from past experience that the prof was going to go through all his slick powerpoint presentations but I guess I hoped we would be able to spend a bit more time really digging into the meat be3hind some of the issue that we raised – not really the case but maybe this is not what the course really is all about.
Most of the day was spent working through the Parent ministry model that Penner has developed and while there are really good things in that – my evaluation was that the whole thing was geared to getting parents of church families on board with your ministry. It really did not deal with the diversity of chaos that is real to so many of the family situations that we are facing and how to work with them in the context of youth ministry. We did have a good discussion on the fact that it seems that youth ministers are almost the only ones who are interested in parent ministry in the church. Of course that is probably tied to the fact that their blessing allows us to do the work we love so… but it would be amazing if other parts of the church would realize how crucial it is to have a comprehensive ministry to all these people who are parenting this next generation of adults…
Chapel was interesting
They had a grad who quoted this guy B.B. Warfield
It goes something like this:
“A minister must be learned, on pain of being utterly incompetent for his work. But before and above being learned, a minister must be godly. Nothing could be more fatal, however, than to set these two things over against each other. Recruiting officers do not dispute whether it is better for soldiers to have a right leg or a left leg: soldiers should have both legs. Sometimes we hear said that ten minutes on your knees will give you a truer, deeper more operative knowledge of God than ten hours over your books. ”What!” is the appropriate response, “than ten hours over your books, on your knees?” Why should you turn from God when you turn to your books or feel that you must turn from your books to turn to God? If learning and devotion are as antagonistic as that, then the intellectual life is in itself accursed, and there can be no question of a religious life for a student, even of theology.”
I like that quote because you know I think we have separated the two into exclusive functions. Intellect and Spirituality seem to be riding on distinct planes in many ways these days. Balance is good. Experiential people always justifying their experiences to intellectuals cause they are afraid that their experiences are some how not a refined view enough view of God and intellectuals who are always justifying their refined view points cause they are afraid that their lack of experiences somehow makes them less.
So there you go. I don’t know where that ends up in the mix but I know I have done a lot of looking down the nose in both areas of my life. If there is one thing this week is teaching me is about my own failings in arrogance. That does not mean that I have to stop pursuing the differentiation between good and bad ideas in fact it makes that pursuit the part and parcel of my religious experience.
If you want more on this Warfield guy see Selected Shorter Writing of Benjamin B. Warfield #1
Okay so one more thing while I am trying not to be arrogant
I am struggling in my acceptance of the Focus on the Family guy (a student in my class). He got all excited about how FotF is developing this family resource that, “is totally non-Christian – it doesn’t even mention God” as an ‘outreach’ tool. Wow it struck me that that might be what Hauerwas was worried about also reaching out without dumbing down by Marva Dawn

Any how there you go we had presentations in our class from class mates reviewing categories of resources. If this is what that student centered learning is what your classes are like Char I feel really bad for you. I had a hard time not smoking these yahoos in the head. I am paying a lot of money for this and I don’t need to hear a shortened history of the church before you tell me which resources you chose to endorse - I mean get to the bloody point. Good lord almighty please spare me from this in the future.

Most of you have no idea how much I long to be with my wife and family I actually ache inside
I fell asleep last night at 11 and did not move till 7 I woke up then from a dream that I had about being in a review meeting from the pulpit committee that had gone very wrong. So yeah 24 hours and I’m home and but before that I get to eat some great food at John and Sarah’s tonight

Carcinogenic products of fire and the seeds of the sunflower all the way home


Gil said...

I like the Warfield quote. I think it echoes a lot of what I've thought on the subject. Your comment on intellectuals needing refined viewpoints in order to compensate for their lack of religious experience was also a good one. It rings true for me anyways.
Reading your blog this week has reminded me of the isolated days I spent at Briercrest. They were not easy but in hindsight they were formative times. I don't think I've ever had so much time to think. Have a safe ride home. Save a carc for me. I'll see you on the weekend.

Incoming... said...

a carc is saved
yup i think we may be in a similar frame of mind so yeah

Freezer said...

good hearing your stories. I'm trying to figure out what I should study in the coming months and years and am convinced that most discussions around effective youth minsitry leave me lacking. I would rather take greek or hebrew to better understand the words of my master then to find out what someone spews as formula for effective youth min.

ps. I mentioned your blog at a Youth Leaders Retreat this past weekend and this guy pipes up with "hey I know that site. His name is Nathan McCorkindale and I guess he knows Gil and has ventured onto this site. So raise a pint for the ever expanding world of blogs.

Incoming... said...

round round we go

Incoming... said...

well go for the greek and hebrew then for sure if that is your interest. I'm not saying that studying the origianl languages is not a good thing but i think we can get the basic gist of what is going on without those languages and ministry strategy happens to be the paramount expression of our basic understanding of truth.
So yeah ministry strategy is really important to me. i guess formulas are what bothers me greatly. unfortunately these formulas find a fabulous home in lamos who are not interested in thinking through their ministry. which is what i think you might be reacting to as well. that is why a theology of agenda might one of the key peices of work we could develop...