Thursday 8 November 2007

Where's the Passion?

I don't want you to think that I spend all day, everyday sitting in cafes listening to people's conversations, but...

What I overheard this evening grabbed my attention and for a moment - just long enough to draw in a deep breath - I felt as if God was saying, "I'm talking to you."

I started reading an excellent book by Michael Frost entitled Exiles: Living missionally in a post-Christian culture. I'm sure I will share some of the thoughts with you at some point. The author presents challenges to the reader in the context of societies that have lost connection with the Christian story (predominantly through a disconnection with Church and Christendom structures - hence the feeling of Christians living in exile). The challenge is a return to living out the radical, dangerous, loving, generous, subversive, compassionate life of Jesus.

And so this is what I overheard coming from the table across from me where four men, in their early thirties, sat talking:

"Jesus Christ....something something something....Jesus....murmur....Jesus Christ....mumble mumble....Christ."

It's funny how your ears re-tune to a particular direction when you hear the name of someone you love. I soon discovered that these guys were talking about Mel Gibson films and happened to briefly discuss his film from a couple of years ago, The Passion of the Christ. It was just after one of them gave his critique of the film that I had my moment:

"I just found it dull"


"Don't get me wrong. It wasn't the subject matter. It was the way it was portrayed."

(Deep breath)

As a follower of Jesus, what is my portrayal of the subject matter I have dared to dedicate my whole being to?

Moments later, as I thought about that question, the next track of a George Michael album played in the background - a love song dedicated to a deceased lover of the musician that echoed a tender (and yet, I suppose, still radical) nature of Jesus.


Wallace said...

Very interesting! I am really looking forward to hearing about the book... and what you think.

Nick Coke said...

I am reading this, too! I'm looking forward to reading what you think...

Cosmo said...

Yes, I will definately write more about this book as I work through it. (I have so many books on my list to read at the moment!)

Nick, I'm guessing you probably won't be reviewing on your site the George Michael song that I refer to in this post! Not quite as edgy as the Killers or Nick Cave! (I enjoyed the recent Johnny Cash track.)

Dana said...

As a follower of Jesus, what is my portrayal of the subject matter I have dared to dedicate my whole being to?
Very well said. It is a fine line to walk in the Light of Christ and worry how the dark views the Light you carry with you.
Is the Light blinding them or piercing their hearts? And is it seen as a warm and welcoming Light or is it casting a cold & judgmental shadow? And we frail fallible humans are charged to carry that Perfect Light.
Scary thoughts...

Look forward to hearing more about the book!