Thursday, March 1, 2007

Saying the Word

Thanks
It has been a delight to receive so many letters expressing support for the Theologians Without Borders vision. I am grateful to have received in these last few days several responses of ‘Keep me in mind’ if something comes up. Thank you to those who sensitively thought of someone else and forwarded the initial information to them. Some very positive expressions of ‘Keep me in mind’ came because others had sent them my letter. It is not too late for you to do the same.

Thank you also for your many questions, many of which I will try and get addressed through our future postings.

But..
One mantra that has been repeated several times is, “I am not a theologian” or “I am not a great theologian” and then follows a summary of a rich experience of ministry experience.

We are using the word theologian generically, not to describe a teacher in theology as distinct from a Biblical scholar, missiologist, pastoral counselor etc.

The word and title theologian is being used to describe a Christian, a pastor, a chaplain, anyone who is seeking, knowing, studying and naming God.

Eugene Peterson writes a lot about the need to sensitively but surely name God when he states that much of contemporary church life seems to be about us and not about God. In a book in the Leadership Series on Special Services there is a wonderful article by Peterson in which he helps Christian celebrants to see past the nuts and bolts of the wedding service. Describing the chief role of the worship leader at such a service he says, “We are there to say one word—‘God.’”

I am also reminded of the importance of the word and work of the ‘theologian’ by a reflective article by Dr. F. W. Boreham.

“If I could have my ministry all over again,” F. W. Boreham writes at the age of eighty-six, after writing more than fifty-five books, penning over 3,000 editorials and preaching countless sermons over a span of almost seventy years. Whatever would he want to do differently? Whatever did he regret? Dr. Boreham continues:

“If I could have my ministry over again, I would talk more about God."

Take the Next Step
We are all called to be theologians. To communicate this one important word, by what we say and how we live.

I hope you, therefore, feel included in the vision of Theologians Without Borders.

I hope you might take the next step of being available to serve in places that are new and that sometimes appear to be risky.

Geoff Pound

Image: “take the next step… in places that are new and sometimes appear to be risky.”