Friday, October 24, 2008

The Advent Conspiracy

It's been a long time since I blogged anything on this site and I've been through a lot in that time. A renewed hobby has taken a lot of my time; a return to shift work in April didn't help although I have a lot more time off; a new grandson in June was wonderful.

I also left church behind last December and have redeveloped a pretty cynical view about organized religion but on occasion, something still stirs within. One Christian blogger that I still read points to The Advent Conspiracy. Worth looking at, worth viewing the video and certainly worth action. I'll have to let it speak deeply to me and renew that passion for the third world and maybe, spend less at Christmas in order to spend more on hope.

Hope, the best defense against cynicism.


  1. Anonymous10:58 AM

    I'm someone who just stumbled onto this blog. I also left church behind a long time ago and became cynical. However, the desire to be in a church would -from time to time- torment me. I'd try to go back and all I'd see were the man-made programs, the false smiles, plasticized religion, self-aggrandizing confessions, a 'brownie point' system of righteousness, judgment. (See, I told you I became cynical!) Then I'd go home for a few more months, confused bc I knew Jesus had established fellowship -a church- here on earth and I couldn't find it or be satisfied. This lasted years. It was a desert place. In that desert, my roots grew deeper, the 'plastic' of my OWN religion melted away and I came to know him in a more deep, rich way than I think I could ever have done by staying immersed in Westernized Christianity. I am not promoting running away. But I remember a series of dreams I had years ago about an underground church, running, being pursued. In a way, it seems that it's the state we are in right now. In the dreams, the church hid in the basement of a shopping mall. To me, the mall is how the visible church has become: marketing, catering to the world, counting success by the size of the crowd. We've lost the impact of the gospel. However, now I am back in the fellowship of a (formal) church. I still see the trappings but I MYSELF am freed of them! The result of my cynical journey was to be able to reject the pollutants to such a degree that I don't, by God's grace, become entangled in them anymore. In the desert, though, I was miserable, lonely. It seems that maybe you're an 'underground' Christian. But if you are, know that it's only the refining process, that you learn to distinguish the valuable from that which isn't - for instance, you redirect your attention to third world needs instead of Christmas materialism (the Advent Conspiracy). So be encouraged: the work he is doing in you is ALWAYS a good work! And by the way, much of my 'desert' years were spent painting and writing, much like your photography. You are talented, my friend, displaying the gifts he's given you. I think he would like that!!

  2. Thanks for your words of encouragement. I like the idea of "underground" Christianity and I think that is really what Jesus intended for the church. But, I more easily talk a good talk that actually following through on it. Lately, there have been several reminders for me to follow up more diligently on those third world needs instead of my own. I am richly blessed in so many ways that I need to pass some of that on.

    The best gift I got for Christmas 2008 was from my son and his family who gave my wife and I a card indicating they had made a gift of water for life to a third world agency through The Salvation Army I believe. It probably moved me more than any other gift I have ever received.

    Thanks again for your words. I pray God continues to bless you and use you in his underground church.


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