Spiritual Christianity Poster: Primitive Faith for a Postmodern World

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[Final version of Spiritual Christianity: Theology, Simplified]

PassionTalks Poster Session, August 11, 2018

Convergence House of Prayer, Fremont, California

https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1r85tCpqvFYNHYQAsp-F7XTtH1C-Yhzpj1NfBTrXRHOI/edit?usp=sharing

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Monk’s Redemption: A Psychological Allegory

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Inspired by the USA Network TV show, Dick Schwartz’s Internal Family Systems model, and a Dream and Vision I had.

Cast of Characters

In order of appearance

  1. Natalie Teeger, the Integrated Self (Spirit)
  2. Adrian Monk, the Manager
  3. Leland Stottlemeyer, the Protector
  4. Hope, the Exile

Also featuring:

  • The Light, Truth
  • The Key, Forgiveness

The Vision

I see a locked door. In a dark and scary place, like a monster movie. Big, iron, with crisscrossed chains and padlocks.

Natalie walks up holding a flashlight. Monk trails behind nervously.

Suddenly Stottlemeyer steps in front of them. His eyes are bloodshot, as if he has been drinking, crying, or not sleeping. Perhaps all three. He is holding his gun in two shaky hands. Pointed at them.

“I warned you not to come here,” he rasps in a hoarse voice.

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The Sinners Prayer, 2.0

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Dear God,

Thank you for creating me in Your image, and for loving us like Jesus.

Make me more and more like Jesus as I listen to your Word, your Spirit, and your Body.

Heal the wounds in my spirit that keep me from loving You, myself and others as Jesus did.

Help me show Your love to the world by practicing the generosity and vulnerability Jesus showed on the cross.

Teach me to always rejoice in the privilege of being your child.

I ask this because of everything Jesus did for me. So be it!

Reconciling Theology and Spiritual Christianity

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When I was a student at Caltech in Pasadena, I used to visit the Fuller Seminary Bookstore.  One day, I saw a small shelf labelled “Practical Theology.”  I turned around and looked at the rows upon rows of bookshelves filling the small building and asked, “Then what in God’s name is the rest of this?”

I still haven’t found a satisfying answer.

Don’t get me wrong.  I am fully convinced of the idea of theology.  It is essential to know what we believe, and I completely agree that our concept of God ultimately shapes every aspect of our lives.  I have been deeply moved and blessed by many of the theologians I have read and studied under.

And yet…

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Spiritual Christianity: Theology, Simplified

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Update: Accepted as a Poster Session. Slides now available.

Abstract submitted for PassionTalks 2018 on Saturday, August 11th at Convergence House of Prayer in Fremont, CA.

Spiritual Christianity arose from a series of blog posts I wrote to prepare my seven-year-old daughter for baptism.  I wanted her to start out with a faith that was:

  • Resilient to disappointments
  • Relevant to culture
  • Revolutionary to society
  • Reviving to the church

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Anjali’s Catechism: A Childlike Invitation to Spiritual Christianity

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Anjali’s Catechism: The Book is coming in Summer 2019.  Preview now.

The Invitation

Are you ready to:

  1. Embrace the One who created the universe as the Heavenly Father who loves you like Jesus?
  2. Submit your awareness, values, and goals to becoming more like Christ’s?
  3. Receive God’s Spirit, Word, and Body to reveal and heal the wounds in your spirit that hinder you from becoming like Jesus?
  4. Value God’s happiness, glory, and relationships more than your own?
  5. Practice generosity and vulnerability so others can see Christ in you?
  6. Surrender childlike happiness for the grown-up joy of loving like Jesus?

Lessons

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Lesson 6/6 Joy (Anjali’s Catechism)

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Spiritual Maturity: Thanks

God made all of us on purpose. We are happy when we obey that purpose. We become happier the better we understand and live out that purpose.

We share many purposes with other people, because God made us the same:

  • Our bodies are happy when we eat healthy, rest well, and use them as they were intended.
  • Our souls are happy when experience beauty.
  • Our minds are happy when we discover truth.
  • Our hearts are happy when we share love.

Joy is happiness of the spirit. It is the deepest and most important kind of happiness. But there are two very different ways our spirits can be happy.

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