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a continuation of the gospel according to dave matthews

preface :: in this series, i’m heavily relying upon the intuitiveness of our readers to shape the conversation; though i’ve got some (perhaps many?) thoughts and opinions about dave and his lyrics – and have been continually impressed over the years at the spiritual under/overtones of the band’s music – i’d prefer to allow folks to come to their own conclusions, and to drive the discussion.

so again, some questions to consider in each of the posts of this series :: Continue Reading…

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critical to the history of christianity is the narrative of the birth of the christ-child, jesus of nazareth.

in an intellectually honest analysis, the life of jesus brings about a tremendous juxtaposition and even an apparent paradox between the way in which YHVH was understood by the writers of the hebrew scriptures and the authors of the christian new testament (and perhaps more critically, our interpretation of that understanding in its application for us as followers of the Way today)- most readily evident in the very person of jesus (his life, teachings and example), who consistently broke both cultural and religious boundaries in an effort to stand in solidarity with the Other.

no wonder the religious leaders of ‘the chosen people’ took issue with him.

by the very nature of calling what had been seen previously as ‘unclean’ clean, this rebellious rabbi opened the door to all new sorts of possibilities for his followers to pursue in the practice of their abrahamic faith.

it is in the personification of God incarnate – the God-man, jesus, – we see a more clear picture of divine perfection coming to release humanity from the shackles of sin – overcoming a culture of death and inviting each of us to participate in a more abundant life.

yet sin still remains in our world, even within and amongst those who claim to follow christ…another possible paradox?

enter the christmas song.

Continue Reading…

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alright – time to put your thinking caps on.

today we continue our ‘the gospel according to dave matthews’ series with a song that truly reflects the purpose of these posts – to provoke thought and inspire conversation through the medium of the musical and lyrically poetic prose of DMB – with a song which carries a great deal of ambiguity and requires a good deal of interpretation (not unlike scripture itself) – yet, i think, may contain truly good news :: Continue Reading…

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this one might catch some flack…

as i’ve expressed in previous posts, i’ve been recently again inspired by the wisdom and posture of my friend brian mclaren. in the midst of recent bad news, brian has determined to share only good news specifically through the medium of poetry – daily providing content which is uplifting, inspiring and encouraging – though not absent of a subversive challenge toward (re)thinking the systemic problems inherent within the status quo.

enter dave matthews.

toward that end, we’ve engaged in a series here at the WayWard follower entitled ‘the gospel according to dave matthews’ – aimed at inspiring thoughtful conversation and intentional movement – and we’ve used dave’s lyrics as fodder in those discussions.

today’s post embodies some subtle tensions many within the church may be uncomfortable with – seeing God as a bartender, drink as absolution, sin as an inescapable and even excusable reality of the human experience, prayer as a (sometimes?) futile endeavor, and depicts even true followers as merely more than hope-filled doubters – yet these lyrics encompass, i think, the opportunity for us to honestly grapple with an understanding of God as One who can handle even our most honest and most vulnerable thoughts.

if only our faith communities reflected that reality.

Continue Reading…

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happy day of labor.

we continue our series on the gospel through the lyrics of DMB with a song popularized by the ‘dave and tim’ LIVE performance at luther college.

without further adieu…  Continue Reading…

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we continue our series on an alternative look at the gospel through the lyrics of DMB with a fan favorite during each LIVE performance by the group. everyday has a simple yet deeply profound message – nearly as simple (and simultaneously entirely complicated) as the command of christ to love our neighbor.

Continue Reading…

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as i mentioned in the first post of this series :: earlier this month, i’ve been inspired by the daily sharing of poetry from a friend in the midst of the recent increase of violence and ‘bad news’ in the news – and find myself comforted, encouraged and challenged by the poetic musings of my own favorite musician, dave matthews.

and sharing is caring.

this is what he’s said about the song featured in today’s post on the gospel according to dave matthews, ‘drunken soldier’ which he wrote for his children:: Continue Reading…

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a continuation of the gospel according to dave matthews here and here

over the past several years i’ve come to recognize that particularly in the spaces i daily inhabit – as a bridge builder in conversations surrounding the intersection of faith, gender and sexuality -the work of a reconciliatory change agent can be exhausting – even disheartening.

while an increasing number are willing to attempt to traverse the dangerous ‘land in between‘, countless others carry a restrictive perspective which dictates they see bridge builders as an enemy – stuck in an ‘us versus them‘ paradigm – and realizing we’re bridge-builders and not wall-builders, they attempt to blow up the bridge from their side.

these don’t want anyone leaving to ‘the other side’ and want to wall people in behind a barrier of fear and ignorance.

yet the tide is turning.

in that vein, i’ve found solace, encouragement and challenge present in the following song from dave matthews’ band – i wonder :: what do you think? Continue Reading…

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a continuation of the gospel according to dave matthews

preface :: in this series, i’m heavily relying upon the intuitiveness of our readers to shape the conversation; though i’ve got some (perhaps many?) thoughts and opinions about dave and his lyrics – and have been continually impressed over the years at the spiritual under/overtones of the band’s music – i’d prefer to allow folks to come to their own conclusions, and to drive the discussion. Continue Reading…

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earlier this month, my friend brian mclaren shared the following status update via social media ::

 

i must admit i’ve (once again) been inspired by his wisdom.

between what has been taking place in the news (gaza, the global ebola crisis, michael brown’s murder and the subsequent rioting [as well as ignorant and insensitive commentary from a number of folks on the escalating situation in Ferguson], ISIS in iraq and syria) and even drama in my personal life, it’s been difficult to carve out space to create blog content that is uplifting, inspiring or encouraging.

enter dave matthews.

Continue Reading…