Sunday, March 15, 2009

The Shack Chat

Two professors from Bethel University were in Orlando yesterday (part of Bethel's Spring Break extravaganza of events for alumni-parents-prospectives-donors that includes baseball and home meetings and things like that) to discuss The Shack. Their specialties: theology and marriage & family counseling. They each presented some observations about the book from their own area of expertise and then there was time for Q&A with the audience. 

I could blather on about the morning for far more words that most of you will endure in a blog (and sometimes I don't let that stop me, I know) -- it was a thought provoking and enjoyable exchange.  I was reminded of how good it is to "reason together" about things like this book even if only to see the world and God from another's perspective. I was also reminded of why I loved my four years at Bethel and why I continue to support that institution. 

(Now that my introduction is longer than my content...)

Here is what I want to say at the moment about William Paul Young's The Shack:  this work of fiction reminds me in a profound way that God is far more than I can comprehend and yet reduces himself so I can enter into a relationship with him that is more real than anything else I encounter or experience. NO metaphorical portrait of God can be complete and in that none can be fully correct -- but the images of God in The Shack (in my opinion) do far more good than harm in simultaneously inviting me to run into his arms and to fall on my face. 

They presented this conversation on Bethel's campus earlier this year where 900 people gathered (compared to the 50 or so who were there yesterday morning) and they recorded that event. If you want to listen it, you can find a link to the podcast here.

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