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Theresa Musante
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I really love this idea! I'd love to hear more details about how this works for me. As an internal processor I've realized that sometimes the chatty style of approaching prayer can feel difficult to me. Written prayers can be great, but it might be even better to write my own. Thanks for the suggestion.
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It's a relief to see people taking bullying seriously. I endured bullying in middle school, and I've been racking my brain trying to think of something that I learned from it. God has since worked for good in rescuing me from the effects of that, but I don't think I learned anything from the bullying itself. Except that it's bad. I'm a bit concerned that as a society we could swing from not taking bullying seriously to throwing kids in jail (which I would see as being overly harsh and unhelpful in most cases). But I'm so glad that people want to protect the weak rather than simply tell them to toughen up.
Toggle Commented Apr 15, 2010 on Were You Bullied? at Not The Religious Type
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Would there be any upside to a hologram over a video? Both of them creep me out, for reasons people have already mentioned. I suppose the only upsides of either would be uniformity between sites, if you consider that an upside.
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My youth group as a teen struggled a bit with this. The pastor was very into evangelism and ended up spending all his time pushing us towards that. In the end, I just felt turned off to evangelism and uncared for. It seemed that we had given up on being a good community and were exclusively trying to be an outreach group. Which makes me think that in order to do both, there has to be more caring for the individual member's spiritual health and vitality to balance out any push towards reaching outwards.
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Yeah .... somehow I think that a'Kempis feels valued by God. He just knows that he is small in comparison to God.
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I like to find people who lean right politically and hear their thought process. Being in New England, sometimes I have to drag it out of people (who feel they'll be abused for voicing such opinions) and sometimes people will tell me way more than I want to hear. I'm probably not going to become a conservative anytime soon, but I think hearing others opinions balances my own views. If nothing else, it humanizes stances that are often demonized within my liberal bubble.
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The most troubling part of the book for me is his prizing of inwardness. He doesn't seem to value any sort of community, outside of his communion with God. Especially in the first 1/3 or so, this almost turned me off to the book. It seems his ideal life would be as a hermit, never talking to anyone but God. How can that be following God? I keep expecting God to tell him to get up and make friends with someone :-). But I love the focus on humility. At first that turned me off too, because sometimes he just seems to hate himself. But as I've kept reading I've come to see it more as a recognition that we are small and God is big. And takes pressure off of me. I don't have to be perfect or reach all my goals tonight. I just need to keep living and try my best to find God and listen to him. That's very good news.
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PLUS, as Andrew and bsergott said, its just fun to have people of different generations and stages of life around.
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I'm still in my 20s so I don't know ... but even if someone wasn't following God or wasn't into this calling stuff when they were younger .... that doesn't mean that they weren't experiencing life and learning and growing, right? So if they plug into this Jesus / calling / destiny thing for the first time now, its not like they come at it with a blank slate. God uses all their preparation and growth and they get to be part of the fun. Right?
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I haven't figured out what I want to say about Imitation of Christ yet, but this conversation reminds me of something I read there recently. "Do not let anything you do seem very important to you. Let nothing seem great, nothing precious or admirable, nothing sophisticated, nothing high, nothing really worth having, except that which is eternal." The part of me that wants to do big ambitious things balks at this. If nothing I do is important to me, will I ever get it done? And doesn't God call us to be part of big and important things? I think he does - but if we take our part too seriously it can lead to grimness. Which makes me think that a'Kempis must be onto to something - something that probably leads to more God and more joy - but I still don't exactly know what to do with this.
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Mar 3, 2010