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Pondering the South African Memesphere – Looking for the Good in Everything

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(Ex?)Christian Evangelism

October 20th, 2007 · Posted by Hugo · 6 Comments

You spend the better part of 25 years believing you are supposed to be sharing some good news with someone, everyone. You are supposed to tell them what great effect this good news has had in your life. Except, it hasn’t. You don’t understand what is good about this news. You try your best, but it just does not work. So you start seeking. You want to understand what you are missing.

How do you share good news that does not sound like good news? You feel you should be shouting the supposed good news from the mountain tops, but you cannot. Because it does not make sense to you. This forces you to consider many methods, many different ways, to share news with people, any news, good or bad. You become very knowledgeable at the best ways of sharing such news, but it doesn’t help, because it still doesn’t seem like something you can share in good faith. It does not feel honest. It does not feel true. So still you seek. You also want and need to hear good news.

You start devouring literature. You read the best of what the news has to offer, as well as the worst. However, you specifically focus on trying to find the good. If so many millions of people think there is good news there, there must be at least some of it, somewhere? Your optimism and hope refuses to relent, until the good is found.

Eventually, after considering all perspectives possible, you see some light in the distance. There is something there! Excitement grabs you, so you pick up the pace. There is light, there are answers, clarity seems within your grasp. You realise your baggage is slowing you down, so you drop the stuff you were carrying, and break into a run.

You are looking for Jesus, the tracks you are following seem fresh. Very fresh. They shine with hope. You are gaining on him, you could meet him any time… An incredible story emerges, a story a few thousand years old, spanning many centuries, in a context you couldn’t hope to understand without some serious study. Years and years of scholarly research is made accessible to you, condensed into a couple of books. The penny drops.

You have found the light. You see good news, in fact, excellent news! And it is so liberating! It sets you free, completely free! The world suddenly makes sense, everything falls into place! It is news that is worth sharing, news that gets you really passionate, news that you are just dying to share with everyone, you can barely help yourself! So this is what they meant by sharing good news? News so powerful and liberating that you are simply unable to keep it to yourself! Your sins fall away… you are free.

It all comes together, the mountain tops beckon, you just want to go and shout. You have found your voice, and you find it is clear and confident. Suddenly you have an opportunity to put everything into practise, you can draw on the years of thought you put into the best approaches to evangelism.

You have found Jesus. The real historical Jesus, that lived, breathed, taught the way. Except, things are not as you had been told they would be, everything ironically seems ever so slightly upside down. Completely upside down, in fact. What was right, now looks wrong, what was wrong, now right. What was first, is now last, what was last, is now first… and your friends won’t understand. Your family won’t understand. It could bring a schism between you and your parents, families could be torn apart.

WHAT DO YOU DO?

Categories: Religion and Science
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6 responses so far ↓

  • 1 skroon // Oct 20, 2007 at 12:08 pm

    Hey man. Great post.

    Rock and a hard place, huh? Wish I could give answers, but I’m still busy dropping some baggage ;)

    Hopefully by the time I catch up, you’ll have some advice for me…

  • 2 Fearing The Golden Compass? How small is your God? // Nov 10, 2007 at 4:49 pm

    [...] suspect Johan Swarts’ God is bigger than that as well. My Jesus has set me free from bondage, free from baggage, given me life, and life in abundance. I so wish you (other fearful Christians, as well as [...]

  • 3 Kyle // Nov 21, 2007 at 7:02 pm

    Wow. I know this post is a month old, but I just found it and I thought it was really wonderful. I’m now feeling the way that you describe at the end. There is something to share! Something wonderful! But it took me so long to find the good news and so many questions…and the key is to never stop asking questions. Only through doubt was I led to a true and honest faith.

    If you get a chance, I’d love it if you checked out my blog too. It’s at http://thenewparables.blogspot.com/

  • 4 Hugo // Nov 21, 2007 at 7:48 pm

    Thanks, added it to the to-read list, will check it out in more depth as soon as I have time (I took a quick glance). In the mean time, I remain quite curious what your perspectives are. So let’s deal in labels:

    How do you feel about liberal Christianity? Have you maybe read something like Marcus Borg or other research into the “Historical Jesus”?

    Have you come across the Emerging Church “conversation”, with authors like Brian McLaren or Rob Bell, or maybe Erwin McManus or that Blue Like Jazz guy?

    OK, enough procrastination w.r.t. my thesis. A week and a half left… thanks for stopping by. (And curious I am, w.r.t. how you found this post.)

  • 5 Unpacking My Baggage // Dec 17, 2007 at 4:56 pm

    [...] past year has been very liberating for me. In my search, I finally managed to drop all the baggage weighing me down by the side of the road. While I could say “good riddance”, there is always the [...]

  • 6 Jesus is Lord! // Feb 5, 2008 at 4:02 pm

    [...] I’ve just returned from attending the Stellenbosch “instalment” (please provide a better word) of The Static Tour. I have hope. So now this post. Let’s muster some courage and throw some words out there. If you want to know where I’m coming from, please read In Too Deep and (Ex?)Christian Evangelism. [...]

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