Friday, November 12, 2010

Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth?

Why do people who pile into movie theaters on a Friday evening complain that the Bible is boring on a Sunday morning?  One reason, and I stress ONE reason, is that we have not rightly been convinced that the Bible is a compelling story. 

If our view of Scripture is akin to Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth then I doubt very seriously that we will be compelled to open its pages.  At least not until something goes wrong. 

I’m one of those guys that tries to put something together without reading the instruction manual.  I only read it when I end up with an extra part or the piece of furniture I was putting together topples onto itself.  I only read instruction manuals when I’m in trouble. 

If that is your view of the Bible then you probably only read it when you have significant trouble in your life.  And even then you probably do not read it the right way.  Rather than reading it to find Christ you are reading it to find “an answer”.  Any answer will do.  Sometimes you are just looking for God’s stamp of approval on what you know you already want to do.  Then you go back to building your piece of furniture and don’t look at your “instruction manual” again until one of the wheels falls off. 

Do you realize how hard it is to convince people to find Life in the Scriptures when this is our view?  It’s like trying to convince people that if they want to really enjoy food they should become acquainted with their refrigerator’s manual of operation.  That’s just silly. 

What if instead we started viewing it as a compelling story told by the Creator of the universe or as a drama that is acted out and then explained by God about God?  (I’m indebted to Michael Lawrence for that thought). 

I’m convinced that a good number of people piling into movie theaters on a Friday night are doing so because they are looking for story.  Not everyone mind you.  But story is powerful.  And we have the most compelling story ever told—the story that all stories comes from—but we’ve decided to sell it as an instruction booklet. 

So, please…Stop It!


P.S. I have no beef with Burlap to Cashmere

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