Head First: Pour me some of that, Bill W.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Pour me some of that, Bill W.

I really enjoy reading Rick's blog, New Life Emerging. Rick has a way of stating very poignant truths in a sort of soothing, laid-back manner that makes me feel the way I do when I read Donald Miller. I especially relate to this line in his profile: "Personally, I don't have the guts to follow Jesus, so I ofen settle for being a Christian." Solid gold.

His latest post, Heart to Heart,really struck a chord with me. It's not long. Read it. Here's an excerpt:

"...I like to hear more about folks' experiences of God more than the latest theologian they have just read. What's God doing in your heart? That seems to be real.

Heart to heart seems to always work while belief to belief makes people act as if they have no heart.

Heart to heart is not much in the way of doctrines but more in the way of experiences. I think that is why I like 12-step meetings so much; folks are talking about their experiences of God more than they do their beliefs. They speak from their heart, and because they do, they speak to my heart.

It's very tempting to argue the jot and tittle of our respective theologies, but in so doing, it's all too easy to miss the heart connection. Why is it so easy to skip the love part? If Jesus were here today (physically, I mean), I think He'd look at most of us with sad eyes as we tried to pin him down on the issues.

Now I gotta find me a 12-step meeting. Sounds way more like my idea of church.


Society's Elite said...

I remember hearing Steve Brown say, "Have you ever been hugged by a doctrine?"

Having a "heart to heart" talk with someone is much better than hearing 2 people debate over the doctrine of predestination. The first warms your heart and connects you with someone. The second gives you as much joy as watching CSPAN.

dorsey said...

I've had boils that were more joyous than that conversation. hehe.

Herobill said...

1 - Sounds good to me: down with theology, down with doctrine, down with arguing jot and tittle, down with pinning down issues.

2 - Sounds GREAT to me:Up with following Jesus, up with actual experience of God, up with sharing from the heart about Him.

3 - Sounds odd to me: heart, heart, heart, heart, heart, heart, heart, heart.

Question: Is this partly just the emotional guy's rebellion against the mindy guys?

Put that another way: do you really think "heart" is any more spiritual than "head"? And if not - that is - if both head and heart are equally "soulish" then what is the way of the spirit?

But don't get me wrong... ;)

JimmyBob said...

Your heart cannot rejoice in what your head cannot accept.

For example: I was having a heart to heart with a woman who claimed to be a multiple personality demon possessed Christian woman. She was sharing with me how God was delivering her on a regular basis from these demons that were "attached" to her soul and that only Christians could enjoy these types of deliverances because if she were an unbeliever the demons would come back 7 times stronger.

Now, my heart wanted to rejoice with her about all of her deliverances, but my head kept getting in the way due to my theology on the subject. How could I rejoice with a woman I didn't agree with? Believe me, I tried, but I couldn't contain all of my thoughts. The only thing that saved me was my wife calling my cell phone twice during the conversation.

Don't you think in these matters theology is important?

Kc said...

Great post and thoughts. I honestly try to get both head an heart aligned in Christ but it's a constant struggle back and forth.
"Why is it so easy to skip the love part?"
That's got to come first I know or all else is nothing.

JimmyBob said...

Dorse - You are "Head First" not "Heart First."

BruceD said...

"12-step meeting. Sounds way more like my idea of church."

I can't tell you how many times I've heard people say this. I've never been to one, but my neighbor is involved with one, and he told me that "it's the best thing that ever happened to him!"

In fact, that might be the only organization I've ever heard people comment about like that.

Zeke said...

12-steppers are some of the most patient, level-headed, well-adjusted people I know. They get it in a way that is both deeply spiritual and deeply practical. They don't judge, they don't try to fix people, and they have a sober (no pun intended) perspectives on their own weaknesses and failings. Yeah, I'd take a church full of them over a church full of the Scripture-laden who have a positivistic solution for everyone else's issues.

dorsey said...

No one suggested that anyone abandon reason. We're all part-emotion and part-uh...mindy.

"Your heart cannot rejoice in what your head cannot accept."

I'm not sure whether I agree with that statement or not, but I do know this; my head can accept plenty that it does not fully understand. I think that's the issue here. Besides, how many witnessing classes have you been in(or taught) where the instruction was to avoid points of doctrine and share your "personal testimony?" I was always told that the unbeliever could not argue with "This is what happened to me..." However, this does not stop us from telling people their experiences aren't valid. Funny.

BTW, "Head-First" was not meant to imply "reason-first." Head-First is my preferred method for jumping into the deep water.

Danielle said...

Anyone every tried Celebrate Recovery? It is a 12 step. And it is not just for adults but now for teens as well. God heals. Period.

Dorsey, this is my first post I think to your blog. Followed you from Rick's page...I gotta learn how to tag from one blog to another because Rick's posts get me thinking...I could respond and rejoice many times over...thanks for your co-post to New life Emerging.

I want to comment about what Jimmibob is saying here...I think we need to look towards Christ for an example. He was heart to heart but at times appealed to the head. I think the heart will give us patience in such circumstances where witnessing will take some head-skills too.

I notice in ministry that sometimes heart to heart can bleed into co-dependency. The heart often longs for connection but our heads help us discern what can be a bad or potentially harmful situation.

We can plant the seeds with the headstrong...but you know, I will personally let God wrestle with the stubborn ones...

jeff said...

I have some thoughts about all this that I'd encourage you to read over at my blog. I think this would clear things up a little bit...

jeff @ demerging

(forgive the spam-format, but it's definitely enlightening)

ninjanun said...

You may not be hugged by a doctrine, but some people's doctrines limit who they think they can hug.