Writer, Church leader, Eccentric Nut, Marketer

I'm Church Leader, Writer, Speaker, Marketer, Kindness Project Founder, Broadcaster and Superhero. But most important I'm a Husband, Father and a worshiper of Jesus.

4 June 2008

I'm glad I'm not who I sometimes wish I could be.

Who I sometimes wish I could be:
Someone who sleeps until 11am

Who I am:
Someone who gets up at 6:30 to the screams of "I peed!"

Who I sometimes wish I could be:
Someone who spends carefree days sitting parks and coffee shops writing books and debating politics

Who I am:
Someone who embraces as much responsibility as possible and revels in it.

Who I sometimes wish I could be:
An artsy, liberal, beer sippin, compassionate Christian who believes in change through passive, grass roots organic culture formation.

Who I am:
I haven't drank a drop of alcohol since the day I met Jesus and don't have plans to change... I believe that the establishment is broken and needs reformation not massaging... I can't stomach candy coating the power of God... I'm confrontational... I believe that organic isn't right by default. I believe that you can create culture.

I'm glad I'm not who I sometimes wish I could be.

I grow weary of trendy criticism of the bold, uncouth, ministry methodology. Especially in light of statements like this. Last year at the Convergent Conference at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, Mark Driscoll made the following remark:

And all the nonsense of emerging, and Emergent, and new monastic communities, and, you know, all of these various kinds of ridiculous conversations--I'll tell you as one on the inside, they don't have converts. The silly little myth, the naked emperor is this: they will tell you it's all about being in culture to reach lost people, and they're not.

Umm... slightly controversial I'd say... especially from the inside! But I'm telling ya. Cities aren't saved by culturally relevant discussion over coffee.

I gave a hearty... "Oh nice rant!" to Jared at "The Gospel Driven Blog" yesterday who wrote...

If all that The Church did to you growing up was make you wear dressy clothes, sit through boring sermons, withstand ten verses of "Just As I Am" accompanied solely by bowel-rattling organ, listen to Sandi Patty and/or The Master's Five, or believe your soul is in eternal jeopardy if you don't choose Jesus, you were not abused by the church.

There are worse things than suffering the unhip-ness of church culture. God doesn't care about your haircut or what style of music you listen to, and if you think a lost world would like Jesus more if only his followers looked more emo, you're an idiot.

The other day I was having a discussion about culture... if it can be created or if it just happens. I LOVE unique individual expression... but things get flawed when legitimate transformation is taken out the the equation. If left to our own devices... we'd be wretches. So Jesus stepped in... and intercepted our sinful fate.

I think you can and SHOULD work at intentionally creating a culture where people can encounter and big, vibrant, powerful, earth-shaking God... and let Him go organic on us from there.


Anonymous said...

I guess the question we must ask and honestly answer is...Are we putting our culture before Christ?

Dave Carrol said...

And you know... I don't dislike cultural relevance. I really do believe in speaking the language of those who you're speaking to..

so I hate railing against it... but if our culture was the same as the kingdom of heaven, many more would be saved, healed, free... so we're responsible to change to be more like that... not vice versa.

Jared said...

Thanks for the link, Dave!

Anonymous said...

Christians are supposed to stand out. Not blend in. This world isn't our home.


The Bean Bag Chair said...

Thanx for never making me feel comfortable Dave...
You are one of the most uncomfortable friends I have - but I have never been more challenged in my faith, grown so much in God before, or touched so many awkward conversations in my life... and I LOVE IT!
I'm glad you are who you are...and not some mellow coffee drinking author outside of reality...

r. radewicz said...

Culture, schmulture.
Aren't we sick to our stomachs with the whole, "we need to study culture to be relevant" hype? Which culture? It seems like what purveyors of this baloney mean is "pop culture." It's all garbage. They take Paul's words at the Aereopagus and build a whole house of cards around the "knowing culture" nonsense. Paul knew the culture because he lived in it and because he was a student of it before his conversion. He did not immerse himself in the filth of the culture of his day so that he could spread the gospel better - nor did he argue that we should.

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