Socrates Evangelion (Beyond “Apology”)

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[The sequel to Socrates Repents. Hat Tip to Socrates Meets Jesus by Peter Kreeft, and Til We Have Faces by CS Lewis. Dedicated to my friend and muse, David Huffman, the Plato to my Socrates.]

A powerfully-built young man stands on the walls of Athens. His face is torn between Hope and Sorrow. He has clearly been there a while, staring into the west as the sun sets. Finally he sighs and turns to return home.

Just before he descends he glances back for one last forlorn look. Then freezes. He dashes to the wall, straining to make out distant details. Suddenly seized with certainty, he claps his hands and jumps for joy. He barely restrains the impulse to jump directly down the wall, but dashes back to the stairs and out the gate. His gleeful shouts trail in the air behind him. “He’s back! He’s here! Socrates has returned!”

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TGR-S6E2d1: Family Time

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Q. How should we react when other people hurt us, or they claim that we hurt them?

P. Seek to Ground our identity and security in Christ, so we can respond with curiosity and compassion rather than fear or anger


When I feel threatened, my natural instinct is either fear (giving in) or anger (taking over). I am learning that neither of these is very effective at spreading the Kingdom of God; though both may be expedient in terms of protecting the self, at least in the short term.

Conversely, when the challenge is not in an area that threatens my identity, I find myself relaxed and eager to engage with understanding all sides of the issue. I am able to focus on ensuring that others feel heard, and become confident enough to explore creative ways of solving the underlying problems.

How do we build a community and practices where all of us can feel safer confronting the emotional issues that define both our identities and our differences?

TGR-S4E3: Relational Practice

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This week on The Great Reset our Biasta Janet re-uses the “Critical Community Protocol” to help the Biastes* evaluate a proposal for training us in healthier relational practices.

Can roleplaying make discipleship more therapeutic and healing?

Question: How can we all get better at actually loving each other the way Jesus does?

Perspective:

  • Use public roleplaying to
  • deliberately practice specific techniques
  • that simultaneously build autonomy, authenticity, and empathy
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TGR-S4E1: Healthy Submission

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We kick off Season 4 of The Great Reset with the Biastes* on 1pm PDT Tuesday, Aug 25, 2020 by wrestling with questions of authority and submission, prompted by a viewer’s email.

Question

How should members of Christ’s Body best relate to internal and external human authorities and institutions, in order to continually increase God’s Kingdom?

Practice healthy submission to existing structures while we continue to design and implement more Christ-centered models
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ShameBreaker Covenant

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  1. God loves me, and has a wonderful plan for my life. 
  2. As I humble myself and turn away from my wicked ways, I position myself to receive the fullness of God’s blessings and favor.
  3. I confess that I have sinned — against myself, others, and God — to the point where I deserve nothing but condemnation and death. 
  4. Through the cross, I have been born again as God’s child; He blesses me because He wants to, not because I deserve it. 
  5. In order to receive my inheritance, I must confront and overcome the part of myself that wants to remain a slave to the systems of this world. 
  6. In God’s timing, I will respectfully renegotiate my relationship to the people and institutions that were my Egypt, in order to redeem myself and them. 
  7. Going forward, I will boast of my weakness, so that God’s power gets all the credit for my achievements.  

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AORTA Adolescence: The Perpetual Practice of Growing into Christ

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It may be too late to have a happy childhood, but it is never too late to have a turbulent adolescence!

We as a society have lost sight of what it means to grow up. And that’s a good thing!

The gift (and curse) of the Enlightenment is that each of us must answer the question: who do I want to be when I grow up?  It is tempting to envy our ancestors and traditional cultures who had well-defined “markers of maturity”, e.g., marriage, mortgage, and making money.  There is enormous security, stability, and support in having society validate who you are supposed to be.

But there is also enormous danger, especially for Christians.

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The San Jose Declaration: Ending the Abortion Wars

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April 1st, 2031 A.D.

Perhaps the most surprising aspect of the San Francisco Revival of the 2020s was an end to the politicization of abortion, in a way that seemed unimaginable to those who lived through the culture wars that peaked during the Trump presidency.  While extremists on both sides still refuse to make peace, the public debate has largely moved on.

The turning point was when two courageous women made a conscious choice to reject the dichotomy between honoring women and honoring the unborn, thus defusing the righteous indignation that had fueled both sides.

And it all began with a yoga class…

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Lesson 4/6 True Love (Anjali’s Catechism)

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WorshipHe’s Worth It

The whole point of becoming a Christian is to know and love God, ourselves, and others the way Jesus did.  But what exactly is love?

We use the word “love” whenever we strongly desire or value something.  But there are three very different kinds of love:

  1. Happiness: because it what we want and makes us feel good
  2. Glory: because it helps us become or be known as our best
  3. Relationship: because we feel or want to be connected to it

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Joshua 3: Holy Shittim!

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Questions:

  • Why should the Israelites stay a kilometer behind the ark?
  • How does God exalt Joshua? To what end?
  • Where should priests keep the presence of God?
  • What is the connection between “relationship” and “results”?
  • What’s the secret to leading a large group on inconceivable adventures?

Read more to pursue answers in [Joshua 3]

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Becoming a Whole Christian

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I want to be a Whole Christian.

I want to love the Lord my God with all my heart, all my soul, all my mind, and all my strength, and be part of a worshipping community with others who do.

I want to love my brothers and sisters the way Christ loves me,
my neighbor as myself,
and my enemies.

Especially my enemies.  For I have discovered that I only see the log in my own eye after I find grace for the speck in someone else’s.

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Song: No Longer Alone

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This is a song I wrote back in 1996 in my post-college, pre-Apple days in Pasadena, California. It was for a girl I knew — heck, it fit pretty much all the girls I hung out with and/or was interested in during that decade.

I also sang it during a “Christian Connection” (online dating site) cruise back in 1999, just before I met Sandhya. By God’s grace I got to perform for the ship talent show. I said I was part of a Christian singles group with 80 women and 15 men — and I was having a *great* time! (as was reported almost daily on the ship’s TV :-).

“But being single wasn’t always fun and games — and that’s why I wrote this song.”
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Unforgiven: A Testimony in Three Persons

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I’m in the process of cleaning up my “personal” site on DrErnie.com, and as part of that I’m moving some of my earlier writings to this site.

To start with, I present “Unforgiven”, a more-or-less accurate transcript of the first time God really dealt with me about anger…

Unforgiven

A testimony in three persons

The stage appears empty except for a single chair, center, facing right. A man sits on it backwards, facing left, hugging the back of the chair. His expression is grim. A single spotlight shines down on him. Another man walk out from right, and stands looking at him from the semi-darkness. The first man speaks, but remains facing left.

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