The worst thing that ever happened to Christianity was when it was accepted as a part of mainstream society. From the very beginning of its revolutionary-based advent, Christianity has thrived best under adversity. Its opponents today in the Western world are no longer persecution and torture, but apathy, complacency and compromise. Christians have isolated themselves into social enclaves that either talk to like-minded people in tones that suggest superiority, speak in platitudes in public that mean little or nothing, or keep silent in the larger arena for fear of being challenged about their belief.
Christians need to know what they believe, and need to internalize it in more than a logical, rational way. The world is looking for answers. If we believe that Jesus is the answer, then we have an obligation to the world to share that answer with them, even if it means we are criticized, persecuted, or humiliated. But Christians need to know that the point of sharing is communication, rather than justification. It is not enough to say what we believe and walk away; we should be constantly looking for new ways to help the world understand what we have learned, and examples that illustrate that Truth. Further, Christians can’t believe that they have learned all Truth, but instead should be open to a continual revelation from God through a variety of means, including science.
This is my Great Adventure Manifesto: to seek innovative ways to broaden communication between the Christian and the unbeliever. Because Jesus used stories more than anything to communicate His truths, my goal is to use stories as well. We live in a world where science, technology and education are either considered all-knowing, or where superstition has prevailed in a closed-minded way to the detriment of common sense. It is my goal to demonstrate the need and appropriateness of the conscience, the soul and spirituality in daily life. I believe that science is a critical need in our society, but also believe that not every question can be answered by science, or even that there is an answer for every question. At the same time, the answers that Christianity often present need to be framed in the context of science to make sense to this Western world mentality.
It is true that Christians often lose credibility simply because they don’t live what they express. Actions and words that don’t agree give rise to the understanding of hypocrisy, and defeat the purposes of sharing Good News.
So with this Manifesto, it is my purpose to declare my intentions. They are:
- I believe in the power of stories. Jesus shared stories because He could share Truth in ways that struck deep into the hearts of His listeners. He also must have understood the power stories have to go beyond social and cultural boundaries. I believe stories are the best way to reach those who may be considered otherwise unreachable and touch them in profound ways.
- In the time I have left upon this earth, I will do my best to share my view of what it means to have a personal God and a daily relationship with Him. My writing will—in large part or small—reflect what I believe is an honest portrayal of a loving God in a big and unloving world, as well as the personal experience of those who are confronted by such a God.
- I will do my best to put it in the context of a modern, secular world, in an attempt to balance the need for education, science, consumerism, and technology as well as a conscience, a belief in God and a life that glorifies Him.
- I will entertain and promote the idea that Christianity is not boring, that it is a revolution of faith rather than a surrender to comfort and conformity. Christianity is built from the inside out, not the other way around. It is the Great Adventure, calling for us to rise above our complacency and go places and do things we would never have considered, all because God has asked us to.
- I believe that we limit God much more than He limits himself, and that our understanding of God is limited because we are afraid to test the boundaries of our understanding. My writing will intentionally challenge those boundaries, and even though I may make mistakes in how I view and present Him, will continually pursue the limitless God in my life and in my writing.
- I will present the idea that science and faith need each other, and that each can provide Truth in its own way. I also believe, and will communicate, that in the end we will discover that there was no disagreement between science and faith, that all that needed correcting was our incomplete understanding of the Universe.
This is what I believe. This is what I will continue to write and share.