A couple days ago, Rick Dugan started a wonderful conversation about simplicity and simplifying life, ministry, church. As of this writing, there have been 16 comments from three continents. Here are a couple more and then go read the conversation at Rick’s place.
1. Five of us know each other, and four of us see each other regularly. This conversation is flowing out of and into face-to-face conversations, email conversations, conversations with God (individually and in twos and threes), and conversations with authors dead and living. Ironically, then, as we are seeking to understand simplicity, it is happening in an incredibly complex technological/interpersonal mileau. And yet, we don’t think about the complexity because we aren’t trying to understand the internet, we are trying to find the heart and mind of God as it applies to our daily lives.
2. We are being a form of a small group, in ways that I can’t decipher but I know to be true.
3. from David Hansen, a book mentioned in this conversation:
“People believe counseling is a great panacea. Yet many are loath to go to a professional counselor. That costs money and real counselors ask hard questions.
‘What I do is a mixture of personal friendship, spiritual direction, and discipleship. I go where people are–yes, I make house calls–visit them and listen to them. They like that part. But when it comes to the solution part of my dialogue, they find out I get real moralistic and even pretty demanding. I tell them what Jesus says about their situation and that they need to repent of their sins and start following him.
‘Of course I am sensitive to men and women who have been subjected to sever mental and physical abuse. Their shattered souls soak up guilt the way acoustical tiles absorb sound. I have referred many such people to competent counselors and continued my pastoral care. But many of the people who come to me for counseling want a quick fix; they want me to give them a way round living a moral life, a shortcut to happiness that skips following Jesus in costly discipleship.
‘Since I do discipleship instead of counseling, I find I have a fair amount of free time on my hands, time I can spend praying.”
“The Art of Pastoring: Ministry without all the answers” 1994 pp71-72.
What is a delight to me is the friendships involved in Rick’s conversation, from people who are NOT interested, really, in the quick fix but who are engaging consistently in the growing process. A great team.
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