To those who wonder what good is Christian faith if it’s not going to make a difference, I reply: If you’re a Christian mainly because you want to be changed, that’s a problem. If you’ve given your life to God mostly because you are tired of yourself and want to be a different person—well, that may suggest you’re merely using God to fix you. That’s not faith. That’s not love of God. That’s love of self.
If you look into your heart and determine that you have given your life to God mostly because you are tired of the world and wish it were different and think that teaming up with God can make it so, then you are merely using God to fix the world you are sick of. That’s not faith or love either. Again, you’re just using God.
. . . . To put it theologically, there is no resurrection without crucifixion. And the crisis comes to a point like this: we look within and discover that despite our transformation talk, indeed our motives are corrupt, our hearts have been wicked and our wills perverse, and we recognize that we’ve been loving self rather than God.
. . . It’s at this point, that we’ve come to the crisis point, the point of crucifixion. We know we’re as good as dead. Condemned to a life of self-centeredness. And thus condemned to a life without God. It is only when all hope is lost, of course, that grace rears its beautiful head. Grace only emerges at the point of utter hopelessness. If there is any taint of will, any notion that there is something I can do to resolve the crisis—be penitent, pray, do good—then we’re no longer talking about grace, but some sort of deal with God. So the crisis point is not a single point that occurs at the moment when one becomes a Christian. The crisis point is life itself. And thus life itself is a grace point.
Sounds a bit different than this:
Q: Well, you said, I don’t know of anything else that revolutionizes the interior of a person’s life like faith in Christ.
A:You know what, I’ll say this: If I knew something that did a better job of changing lives, I’d switch. (guess before you click)
WHAT: Mockingbird seeks to connect the Christian faith with the realities of everyday life in fresh and down-to-earth ways.
WHY: Are we called Mockingbird? The name was inspired by the mockingbird’s peculiar gift for mimicking the cries of other birds. In a similar way, we seek to repeat the message we have heard - God’s word of grace and forgiveness.
HOW: Via every medium available! At present this includes (but is not limited to) a daily weblog, semi-annual conferences, a quarterly print magazine, and an ongoing publications initiative.
WHO: At present, we employ two full-time staff, David Zahl and Ethan Richardson, and two part-time, CJ Green and Bryan Jarrell. They are helped and supported by a large number of contributing volunteers and writers. Our board of directors is chaired by The Rev. Aaron Zimmerman.
WHERE: Our offices are located at Christ Episcopal Church in Charlottesville, VA.
WHEN: Mockingbird was incorporated in June 2007 and is currently in its ninth year of operation.
The work of Mockingbird is made possible by the gifts of private donors and churches. Our 2016 budget is roughly $240,000, and with virtually no overhead, your gifts translate directly into mission and ministry. Can you help? Please feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or would like more information.
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