Saturday, February 23, 2019

Book 2 of 2019 -- Out Of Sorts

In her book The Great Emergence the late Phyllis Tickle spoke of the idea that every 500 years or so the Church has a great rummage sale as a part of a grand reset. I found the idea intriguing, even if I think it fit the Reformation better than her other historical exemplars, and only time will tell how the current era will math that image. In this book Sarah Bessey takes a similar tack to discussing her own faith journey.

Bessey uses the image of gathering to sort through a loved one's 'stuff' after the funeral. What gets kept? What gets donated? What gets tossed out? She then uses this image in terms of how our faith changes over the years, a process in which we once again ask what to keep and what to toss, along with deciding whether or not or how to integrate new insights and understandings.

This book is largely a memoir, but in the act or writing a memoir Bessey invites us to consider the questions we bring to faith.

I think Tickle is right. I think the church is once more at that time where we need to investigate what needs to get put out to sale.  I am not sure the church is yet willing to do it. I like Bessey's approach.  When we go through the belongings it often takes a few goes. Some stuff gets tossed immediately. Some gets put in a box because we just can't deal with it yet. Some survives one or two cullings before eventually being put out to sale or toss. I suspect that is how the church will move into what Tickle called the great emergence.

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