20060130

pissing contests

here's the deal, i am getting real tired of all the pissing contests - one person says something; because someone else wants more blog hits they say something else; then people "pick sides" and dig their heals deep in the snow. i am so not comfortable with that because i think it speaks to what we are not about.

it is getting to be a big pissing contest and personaly, i have no desire to write my name in the snow with those who think, for what ever reason they have, "they got it right" and the rest got it wrong. the latest in this line of snow writing comes in the form of some in the emerging pissing on mark driscoll and his new ezine "resurgence"

it seems, because mark is more in tune with being reformed in his theology that some people believe he can not be "emerging" - one person, who will remain nameless, believes [in connection with mark's theology], "That would be okay, I think, except that the heart of the emergent movement really is defined by a "generous orthodoxy," and some of our Reformed friends land too hard in certainty" - what the.... who came up with that line? i don't remember getting the email on that the emerging needed to have a heart based on a "generous orthodoxity." now, i think, for me and i can only speak for me, that a generous orthodoxy is cool, but it is not the "rule" by which i will govern my walk or my view of my faith and i will not use it as a "test" to see who is and who is not allowed in the emerging conversation.

i love brian, but brian does not define what is and is not emerging, he is but one voice - and i believe he would agree with that view. this is also true of mark; he does not define what is and is not emerging - please, this is so silly and it is what i have been speaking against for a while, and now it is taking shape - if this is the "new emerging" - i want nothing to do with it. this person also says, "I hate to say it, but Driscoll comes across as a mainstream evangelical leader with an emergent lapel pin" well, at least he has the lapel pin. the person who said this needs a lapel pin that says, "close-minded modern thinker" - because there is nothing different in those words then the words shared by others against us.

sometime back, there was a call from emergant for us to "act as one" and i agreed - and i truly have been trying, but voices like this are distructive to the idea of unity. i have not been blogging much about emergant because i wanted them to take root and i wanted to see what happened - and if this is it, i am not happy with the possibilities. it matters little to me if brian and mark see eye to eye on things, but that does not mean that mark is not "emerging" because he disagrees with brian - it simply means that they see things different - heck, we all do. heck, i see things different, in some cases, from brian [and mark] does that mean i am not emerging? if i agree with mark on somethings, does that mean i must be against brian on all things?

i am tired of the pissing contests that seem to be forming, and to be honest they are not forming because mark and brain are doing it - they are forming by some who, for some strange and weird reason, think it's important to put two people at different polls. i am sure brian and mark disagree on things, and that is fine and they can work it out - they do not need us to get involved. i argree with mark on somethings, and mark and i have even spoken on the phone [back in the day] about things, but that does not mean i would discount him as a voice in the emerging and not place him in the emerging. i have had the opportunity to speak with brain also [he was one of the first to take the seven questions on ginkworld] and i have meet some of the people from his church [the chair of the church board came down to visit 247connection because they are friends with some of the people in the church i serve] but that does not mean i agree with brian 100% on everything.

if we are going to be calling each other out to pissing contests, i am not going to be connected to that - i am looking for voices who desire to share, think and question. i am looking for a place where what i have to say is not going to be discounted, belittled or insulted because i disagree with brian [and i know this is not something brian supports]. i seek to be part of a conversation that allows voices that differ, and even strongly differ, with my views. i know mark can be a person who has a passion for his point of view, but let us not confuse passion with control - and let us hear his voice.

if not, then i have to question the hearts of those in the emerging, because if they desire to stop mark's voice, will they desire to stop my voice, and the voice of others? my blog bud andrew jones [tallskinnykiwi] brings out some great points, and i admire andrew greatly. i will admit that mark can be hard, and even insulting at times - but we still need to hear his voice.

7 comments:

Rich said...

John,

This is a good and timely word. Thanks for sharing and putting some things into perspective. You and I don't always agree, but I think our hearts are on the same path.

Rich

chuck said...

I think that it is cool that Mark has finally touched a blog....I don't agree with him on everything. I don't agree with myself on everything. :)

After we get done pissing, we need to wash our hands and go back into the coffee shop, as friends, and engage in conversation. I seem to remember that Peter and Paul had a disagreement....:)

peter said...

There was a great post around here that talked about the problems with all the new names that have recently become trendy in the church world.
Its worth a reread with this most recent post in mind. Why do we all waste eachother's time kicking up a storm over the little things in life.
I might be new to this emerging business, but here's how I lay it down: the church has become too political, all we do is argue about style, method, in genearl the 'how'... and so emerging church to me should be moving away from that, toward the things that really matter. Towards things the Jesus actaully cared about. Pissing contests are something we need to be moving past. Coming up with new things to piss over = lame.

Peter
www.lublink.ca

John said...

just had a meeting with a guy who knew little about emergent but his thoughts on who and what they are doing was very similar to what you are saying here as if they have it figured out and what really bugs me is the inability of emergent to take any form of critique i guess the generousity only works when you agree with the orhtodoxy, i too am tired of the she he said bullshit that surrounds emergent and i am tired of a few setting the agenda for a generation. i think i am to the point of just bowing out and living out a live given to sacrifce and loave here in southern delaware does it matter if you are clavinist or not if you arent loving others sacrificially what good is it and if you not subverting the status quo why are you following Jesus anyway?

Len said...

But bro john, now that you have labeled me as a closed minded modern, you have joined the pissing contest.

Or am I missing something here?

I admit.. I'm a little puzzled.. and I really don't know how to address all this polarity. You are right.. it is not a good thing.

john o'keefe said...

well, i did strive not to mention names :)

i think the best thing to do is to just stop - me, you, mark, jason and others just need to stop. i may not agree with people, and that may cause me anger at times - but i think we truly need to express grace in our differences and know that we strive to serve a God big enough to hold us all :)

Mennonite_Pacifist said...

But pissing is such a necessary bodily function... haha.
I agree... no book, no philosophy, or magazine sets the tone for what constitutes faithful discipleship... not even the word 'emerging'. Jesus Christ himself is the foundation upon which no other foundation can be laid.
peace...
mf