A post in the ongoing---and possibly unending--anointing (one n) thread got me to thinking, which is always a dangerous thing. One post in particular mentions having trouble knowing the difference between (paraphrase here) participating in a spirit filled worship, experiencing God's presence, or having an emotional reaction to music that happens to mention Jesus in it.
What do you think?
Yes!! Yancey is one of the few Christian writers I can really read and get something out of. Most cannot get through all the filters I have (no--I'm not happy I'm so skeptical about Christian books), but the few books by Yancey I've read have been very helpful. This mention here got me to looking at what's he's done and I see one called "Finding God in Unexpected Places" which seems like it'd fit what we're talking about here. Has anyone read that one?????
I have a Wallet Filter that determines most of my book-buying, so I'm always grateful for a good reference about a book.
I was at a seminar with John Wimber not long before Vineyard began. He was a pleasant, thoughtful, studious fellow, wondering what aspects of worship "phenomena" were mental, physical, spiritual or what -- what is this interface between flesh and spirit? What is power of suggestion, what is true or phony, all of those questions. So he was doing some what he called "quasi-scientific" studies on phenomena. As an example of the sort of thing he was doing, he asked a lady to begin to worship God as personally as she could in the situation, while Wimber observed what was happening physically. He noted the "shine" so characteristic of intensely praying people, adding that the glow is sweat -- during intense prayer a person tends to sweat, and especially with the ceiling lights catching it, we easily saw the shining countenance.
Writing this brought up memories of John Wimber, a wonderful songwriter and key individual in modern worship theology. In a world where wacko charismatics with questionable lifestyles are splashed in front of us on the Tube, for Wimber truth, learning truth and being true was always at the core of what he did.
p.s. I changed my picture, so you can see my head is always shining.
It's funny you should bring that up. I had a "religion" professor during my first college career who was a very serious and committed Christian believer. He mentioned a study that concluded that people in any religious system tend to experience what they think or expect to experience. Thus the Buddhist eventually says, "ah, this is it, I'm here" while the practitioner of Mambo experiences possession by Lwa, or so they believe.
This all points to the fact that the power of suggestion is powerful indeed. It certainly brings many of our "experiences" into question and our ability to truly verify and test them like the scriptures insist that we do. I don't see a miracle in the NT that wasn't verified both before and after by third parties, including the resurrection.
How's that for a redirect?