I read Blue Like Jazz long ago enough that I have kind of forgotten what it said, except that I was glad at the time that he said it and I read it. And it became a Bestseller. And it was nice to finally have someone from my generation talking about details of faith. And he uses regular language, not the kind that one gets used to hearing in church that we mostly know what it means, mostly. Like throne of grace, the blood of the lamb, hedge of protection…but for someone who hasn’t been singing hymns they can be sort of obtuse. Donald Miller doesn’t speak like that. And that is about the extent of his evangelism, he is accessible.
This is Donald Miller.
Basically the book is just looking into what following Christ looks like for young people now. Questions, thoughts, memories, experiences he has had which have informed his faith. For me it was important to hear a contemporary speak about faith. I have been raised in an authority questioning way, I suppose. And it was the first time I was introduced to people writing about faith/spirituality, and now I am kind of hooked.
Addy and I saw this the other day while we were out hunting ladybugs. This is the sex I alluded to earlier. Are you scandalized? No? Hm.
In the link above he talks about referring to the natural world as “Mother Nature” (actually, Oprah does it on some cable program). He suggests that if people don’t believe in God, they believe that all created things were created by accident or coincidence, so it doesn’t make sense to refer to “Mother Nature”. He has a little point. But I think what really made me post this was because on the about page, he is playing a video game in a bar. He has some bestselling books about christian spirituality so naturally, that is his environment, right?
I married a long, no, never-ending debate about creationism v. evolution. When I got married, I still believed everything I was taught in college about evolution, and I didn’t really bother to reconcile it with a literal interpretation of the bible (a subject for another time). I still don’t take a literal approach, but the questions the debate raises makes for some diversion from doing other stuff, like my job. I like the exposure to it. Sometimes. It is basically a “do you believe in God is right or science/scientists (man) is right?” question. But for some people it is a big deal. Scientists have ideas (which they call theories) about where life came from, all of which I have heard seem about as plausible as God creating everything. And this is the controversy.
Donald Miller makes a quaint observation, if a person doesn’t believe in God, why would they believe in Mother Nature? Does anyone? I have all sorts of thoughts about this, but for now its enough to look at his blog. Check Uncle Nature at the end.
Here is a quote from him that makes me want to write:
Let’s say you were married and had two kids, and lets say you had me over for dinner, a young writer whose books you enjoy. And lets say after dinner you put the kids down, and I end up reading them a story. You go back into the kitchen and start doing the dishes, and I sit there by your kids and tell them a really dark, creepy, perhaps inappropriate story. Lets say I tell them a story that no kid should really hear.
Of course, I’d never do that. I’m no creep. I only say that because the truth is, if we don’t tell the people around us stories, somebody else will.
A story is just a person that wants something and overcomes conflict to get it. And we are all telling stories.
But stories aren’t neutral. The stories we hear change the way we see life….