Monday, May 12, 2008

What Good is Theology?

Last week I got to attend a retreat with other first call pastors. On Thursday night our conversation turned to music at weddings and funerals. Much of the group were adamant that only "sacred" music should be a part of that worship time. They shared several examples of songs that people had wanted to use as part of a wedding or a funeral. I got the impression that a number of them would not even want to use "praise and worship" (or some call it "contemporary") music used.

I have to admit, that didn't sit with me real well. Sure, there is music that is more appropriate than others. I do believe I would draw the line with music that is overtly sexual, violent, or filled with inappropriate language (like curse words). That being said, as I retired to me room that evening I was struck with the thought of, "How egotistical it is to feel you can decide for people where they do or do not connect with God."

I wonder if sometimes as pastors we missed a big part of our theological training. How often do we, as resident theologians in our congregations, want to limit where we discover/encounter God? Instead, because we are trained in theology is it not our duty to broaden where we see God? If God is at work in the world, then we should not limit God to the confines of our sanctuaries. If God is at work in the world, and we really believe that, then it is our responsibility to help give people the language (the eyes of faith) to recognize God in ever expanding range of places. Otherwise, what good is theology?

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