Wednesday, February 23, 2005


My "encourager" of last semester bought me a small book called, "I Can Only Imagine." It provides the MercyMe single of the same name on a c.d. Each small, glossy page holds a short story of how this emotion-invoking song touched someone. A mother died ... the song comforted. A fellow Iraqi soldier was killed, the song was played a hundred times that night. Miscarriages occur ... the mother weeps for resolution as the song plays.

It's crazy almost that some people are opposed to comfort. One indication of this was seen recently in a popular magazine. In the latest issue of Time (Feb. 28), letters to the editor responded to the magazine's cover story focus on influential evangelicals of the day. The letter writers were jittery (okay, angry). One accused these evangelicals of furthering an agenda that dictated "religious persecution rather than religious freedom". One said that these people represented "an aggressive brand of Christian religiosity from leaders whose intolerance rivals anything we have heard from the Islamic zealots." One argued that the evangelicals showed simply one thing: "there is money to be made if you can convince people you have a direct line to God."

While I am a critical thinker who doesn't like the wool pulled over my eyes, I can't help but notice that these writers are practicing the same intolerance that they're ranting about. If you practice baby-with-bath-water-thinking as their letters strongly indicate then how can you say your way of thinking is better? It's simply fingerpointing both ways, which negates itself.

I was sad when I heard them, though. If "I Can Only Imagine" comfort is stunted for them due to a rigorous wall of belief, then a hole is dug, limits are placed. If they believe that all evangelicals are greedy, exclusionist who wish to undermine democracy (interestingly enough, have they studied their history of America?) then they are missing out on some exceptional views of helping alleviate human suffering. But, I guess like many of us, they just want to lash out and stay only there. They want to remember the wounds of those who were imperfect before them and not open their imagination to something different, something higher than people even. Stuck in a hole. It's safer that way.

That's my commentary for the day. :) I can only imagine the day ahead!

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