Sunday, December 17, 2006

Velvet Elvis

I'm reading this book called Velvet Elvis by Rob Bell. I bought it late yesterday afternoon and if I hadn't been so tired last night and then had church this morning, I'd be done with it by now. In fact, I'm almost done.

I love it.

I'm convinced by what I've read so far that Rob Bell is describing very much the sort of thing that's been going on here at this blog and with my friends like Peterson (and basically everyone else in my links).

At the beginning of the book he compares the Christian journey to his jumping up and down on the trampoline with his children. The springs are like the "doctrine" but they are not static. They make us bounce and fly on the mat and particularly so when we jump together and our different leverages at one point or another shoot one of us to a height or "revelation" that perhaps we've never achieved or imagined before. Being Christians together is about questions, discussions, and the endless search for the mysteries inherent in our very creation. It's not about arguing who is right or wrong, in or out. In fact, it's not about arguing at all. It is about living in "the way" of Christ.

I'll probably write more about it after I finish it. Of course, I highly recommend it. I'm pretty sure it's not going to mention anything at all about being gay, and yet, it sounds like it might contain the sort of wisdom easily applied to those who may be struggling with the idea of Christians who are also gay.

I think if you'll follow that link and read the pages that they allow on the Amazon site, you'll be intrigued.

love and grace,

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TCS said...

great little book. Read it about a year ago. I love the trampoline metaphor.

Norm! said...

Rob Bell sounds like a fascinating guy. I hate to admit it, but I tend to check every religious leaders' gay stance before forming an opinion about them. I know that's pathetic and narrow-minded of me. So far, my Googling has not turned anything up. However, he may address gay issues in his second book Sex God: Exploring the Endless Connections between Sexuality and Spirituality ( which is due March 2007.

FeatherIron said...

Pam your killing me!! That is the book we are reading for April!! I think everyone I know is reading that book!! And loves it! I think I'm gonna have to cheat and read it on my way to Ohio this weekend.

grace said...

OK....I'm going to try this AGAIN...I've been trying to leave a FREAKIN' comment on my OWN blog for the last 30 MINUTES and this new BETA thing is wearing me out with the google log in and all that crap!! (i'm sorry, i don't sound very Christlike, do I?)

TCS: So good to hear from you! I will catch up at your place later.

Norm!: I do that to, actually...I have some "key" issues that I like to hone in on before I spend/waste too much time...and yet, I'm pretty sure we should each be a little better about going ahead and listening, ya know? I'm saying we're alike in that way and it's probably not always a good fact, I know it's not because I hate it when those very RIGID types blow right past me just because I believe a person can be gay and Christian. Goose and gander and all that. Thanks for digging up the info. about the new book! I hadn't heard about it yet.

Carole: You'll have it finished before you ever get out of Louisiana! :)

love and grace,

BrettFusion said...

Pam, beliving that a person can be both 'gay' and 'Christian' is fine, if you accept that a person can be identifying themself as a 'Christian' falsely.

A true 'Christian' is someone who is continually working with the Holy Sprit to live a life that is as close to God as possible. Since a 'gay' person is choosing to actively live a sinful lifestyle (just like a 'straight' person who is living "in sin" with their boyfriend or girlfriend, out of marriage), they are apart from God and so their daily life is ruled by the flesh rather than God.

So many Christians are worried about not insulting or otherwise offending people who are living in sin, because they have this idea that if we're truly honest with people, they will run away thinking that Christianity (or God) is too cruel or too judgemental. But what about the nature of God, and what about the role of a Christian in this world? Are we here to make everybody around us feel all warm and fuzzy? Or are we here to help point people towards Christ through our testimonies of how God has changed our lives and how He has saved us from our own filth. The answer is that we're supposed to point people to Christ, and point out that a life separate from God leads to an eternity separate from God! The *only* way to change God's judgement on us is by seeking salvation, which not only comes from accepting Jesus into your heart as your Lord and Savior, but by also *repenting* from your sins! We're supposed to be turning away from our old, sinful nature, and living a life FOR God. And, when you are saved you become a totally *new* creation; a completely new person that has God residing inside you and leading your life (rather than the fleshy, sinful nature). You cannot continue to live a sinful lifestyle and be 'right' with God — it's just not possible.

As someone who lost a spouse to homosexuality, and as someone who was also totally deceived about what Christianity is and isn't for well over 20 years, I have spent a lot of time learning about all of this... and I am coming to you with a humble spirit simply pleading with you to not spread falsehood through your own invented view of Christianity... Please, read the Word and take the flesh out of your thinking... the life that God can give you is so much more rewarding than anything that we could 'invent' while we try to justify the sinful lifestyles that we or others choose to live. Don't invent a new 'god' for you or others – the real, true, LIVING God is holding out His hand to you and He just asks that we drop the old and embrace the new...

grace said...

I appreciate your humble and heartfelt comments. We disagree.
Oh well.
I love you and accept you as my brother. Actually, I agree with your last paragraph entirely....and could say it all to you just the same.

love in Christ,