What We Talk About When We Talk About God
While Rob Bell’s latest book doesn’t have the shortest title, it quickly became one of my favorites of what he’s written. Unlike his last book (Love Wins) which I think was written more for the hype, this book challenges the reader to think through the ways in which we think of God. For most people, this is a discipline they’ve never really spent the time on. But as Bell develops, this is a great challenge for us not only in our own journey with God but also in the way we share Him with others. Here are some of my favorite quotes from the book:
Like a mirror, God appears to be more and more a reflection of whoever it is that happens to be talking about God at the moment. Explain how that particular song moves you. Articulate why you fell in love with that person. Provide data for the manner in which that meal with those friends made your soul soar. Most of the things in life weâ€™re most sure of, many of those events and experiences that are more real to us than anything else, lots of sensations we have no doubt actually happenedâ€”these are things we cannot prove with any degree of scientific validity. These forms and expressions come and go over time because our conceptions of God and the images we use to picture and explain those conceptions are deeply shaped by the patterns, technologies, and customs of the world we live in. An image of God doesnâ€™t contain God, in the same way a word about God or a doctrine or a dogma about God isnâ€™t God; it only points to God. Doubt is often a sign that your faith has a pulse, that itâ€™s alive and well and exploring and searching. Faith and doubt arenâ€™t opposites; they are, it turns out, excellent dance partners. Itâ€™s possible, then, to be quoting the Bible out of the conviction that youâ€™re defending Godâ€™s way when in fact youâ€™re in that exact moment working against how God wants to continue drawing and pulling and calling humanity forward. This isnâ€™t about the same old message of making something happen; itâ€™s about waking up to that which is already happening, all around you all the time, in and through and over you, trusting that God is with us and for us and ahead of us.
Do You Want to Read the Bible Without Falling Behind?
Sign up your email and I’ll send you a PDF to download and use my custom-made reading plan system. There’s no way to fall behind on this system and every day will be different no matter how long you use it!
I’ll send future content directly to your inbox AND you can dive into the Bible like never before.