Monday, January 29, 2007

A standard deviation . . .

I cannot consider myself a prodigal.

There's been no uncommon recklessness to my lifestyle, no overtly wasteful habits or deplorable actions filling my hours (at least not by my standards), what I've experienced over, well, the past seven years is more of a giant digression. I've found myself eager to peregrinate, to ramble, and this isn't just a physical longing.

I'll pause for a moment. Yes, "peregrinate". The word stood out to me in the thesaurus like the dark punctuation of a hawk in the sky. What have I been up to? Eyes open. Sight extended. Hunger like a raptor. Distance like a bird above the water. No rest. I think at about 18 I realized my childhood had been the equivalent of one of those falcon-trainer's bags over my head. Its removal showed me blue, an expanse of atmosphere that I knew could be traversed...there's so much of it, I haven't even covered half a mile.

Thus arose my pilgrimage, because sitting on a limb during college, interesting as it is to survey, included no wind or peril or exhilaration.

Why did I stop almost four months ago? What, if we look at them as a journey, were these accounts in the blog leading up to? And where do I find myself now?

Hello again, readers or friends (both?), I'm writing to you once more. I'm writing because again I feel that wanderlust, I know that in my heart, post-modern surface living doesn't fly. I can't survive in this day and age on dollars and donuts. I can't wake up with a routine schedule, reading about the problems of the world and leave the larger questions unexplored. I may have feigned objectivity as I reported on my institutional and community experiences at Seattle churches, but, just as one could infer a food critic doesn't just write columns about vinagrettes, fondues and wine-pairings for scholarly interest but because she loves to eat and she gets free meals, so one could surmise that I go to churches for other reasons than my expertise about them. I need to sip my coffee.

You all know Socrates. Yes, the critic of the "unexamined life", that's who I'm referring to--what was he about? Questions. So many questions, that man had. I have a few myself. Actually, I have more than a few. I have questions about ritual, questions about doctrine, about myth about sin about predetermination about...maybe too many? Where do faith and questions coexist? On what path of living do we rest calmly in our trust of God while constantly resisting the status quo of human ideas and traditions?

I'm taking up the pilgrimage again. This time, however, you'll probably sense more of my own journey in the posts. Many people have asked me if this project was about finding a church, finding a wasn't, not in the beginning. It is now. I'm still curious about how others worship, about how they seek the I'm also looking for my own pratice, what can function for me.


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