As Barbara Brown Taylor warns, what threatens the church more than bad preaching or institutional self-preservation—or any of our usual gripes—is a tendency to intellectualize faith, tucking it far away from our bones and our bodies and our tear ducts. (This habit is especially noticeable in many predominantly White congregations, whose theologies were shaped by the Enlightenment’s love of reason and tendency to reduce faith to a series of ideas.)
Given the glut of data already clogging the brains of young people in the Digital Age, the last thing they need is more ideas about God. What they need—and what we all need—is God, Incarnation, God in human skin.
—Kenda Creasy Dean, Ron Foster, & Megan Dewald, The Godbearing Life, Revised Edition (Upper Room Books, 2023)
What do you think presents a great threat to the church? Join the conversation.
Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.
—Mark 12:30 (NIV)
Prayer for the Week
I am no longer my own, but thine.
Put me to what thou wilt, rank me with whom thou wilt.
Put me to doing, put me to suffering.
Let me be employed by thee or laid aside for thee,
exalted for thee or brought low by thee.
Let me be full, let me be empty.
Let me have all things, let me have nothing.
I freely and heartily yield all things
to thy pleasure and disposal.
And now, O glorious and blessed God,
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
thou art mine, and I am thine. So be it.
And the covenant which I have made on earth,
let it be ratified in heaven. Amen.
—A Covenant Prayer in the Wesleyan Tradition
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(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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