23 November 2009

praying: For/With Astonishment

“A quite specific astonishment stands at the beginning of every theological perception, inquiry, and thought, in fact at the root of every theological word. This astonishment is indispensable if theology is to exist and be perceptually renewed as a modest, free, and happy science. If such astonishment is lacking, the whole enterprise of even the best theologian would canker at the roots. On the other hand, as long as even a poor theologian is capable of astonishment, he is not lost to the fulfillment of his task. He remains serviceable as long as the possibility is left open that astonishment may seize him like an armed man.”

Karl Barth, Evangelical Theology: An Introduction, p. 64.

What I'm saying is I think like is staggering and we're just used to it. We are all like spoiled children no longer impressed with the gifts we're given- it's just another sunset, just another rainstorm moving over the mountain, just another child being born, just another funeral.

Donald Miller, A Million Miles in a Thousand Years, p.58.

I pray that at the very most, I remain serviceable and open to being astonished. Let me not forget the preciousness and glory in this theological work. I rejoice in not being underwhelmed in this endeavor! I am no great anything, but let me continue to understand You, myself, and this made world better. Let me not bemoan my lack, but rather define myself and my work by means of awe and astonishment.

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