Monday, May 01, 2006

expanding our horizon

In my current reading of Mark E. Biddle's book: Missing the Mark: Sin and Its Consequences in Biblical Theology, I am reminded of the phrase "expanding your horizons". There have been a series of posts on Jesus Creed concerning this book. And I am finding it to be one of those rare books that is pushing me to look at foundational matters, in this case sin (and along with that Jesus' atoning work) in a broader, and more Biblical way (even if I may not see eye to eye on every jot and tittle of what Biddle says). In any case, this is an example of letting ourselves be pushed so as to expand our horizons.

I think a great way to expand our horizons is to read books. Books by Christians and nonChristians. I do this as a person of faith in Jesus. Therefore I will be reading Scripture and seeking to follow Jesus through this all. And doing so as part of the Jesus community. So I don't open myself up to expanding my horizons as a supposedly neutral person. There really is no such thing as neutrality and pure objectivity anyhow. We all have our experiences and beliefs (presuppositions) that influence how we see things and our response to anything.

I try to listen daily to NPR , mostly their news features/stories (and BBC, the same, at times), to try to better understand the world and other's perspectives and insights. One program on Sunday morning I'm trying to get into the habit of listening to (it starts 7 am here) is Speaking of Faith with Krista Tippet. One can download their programs. I hear Christians and people from worldwide religions on there and can find out, sometimes with remarkable clarity, what people believe and practice as their religion.

I think one of the best ways we can expand our horizon is to listen to others. While being friends. And share with them. As those learning together. And appreciating each other's thoughts and experience. Even when they may not be a person of faith in Jesus. We do have the good news of Jesus and God's kingdom. But we share it as fellow travelers with them. Not as those who are superior. Yet we do so as those who have faith. And because of that faith we seek to live and speak accordingly. But we do so as fellow human beings together.

How do you expand your horizons?

Father, help us to ever be growing in our appreciation of this world, your world. Let us listen and learn and play our part. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Even here and now. Amen.


Bob Robinson said...

So many Christians have been trained to be suspicious of "horizon expansion." We are constantly frightened of heresies and wolves in sheep’s clothing. But if we are not listening to other voices, we may be the ones expounding heresy and walking around in a fleece.

Ted Gossard said...

Yes Bob. Great point! And thanks!