Friday, July 15, 2011

Confessions from a Crowded House: Scenes from a Sequel

The most memorable (and, in my mind, most legitimate) critique of my book Deliver Us from Me-Ville is how individualized the content is. Although there's a chapter on how God calls us together and the challenges that come with the call--not to mention the title of the book--on balance the book is a matter of personal spirituality, and at least one person called me on it.

You'd think, then, that I would have learned from my mistake and broadened the scope of whatever I wrote next. That didn't turn out to be the case; The Parable of the Unexpected Guest is similarly personal, and so suffers a wee bit from the me-'n'-Jesus menace that plagues so much of contemporary evangelical writing. (I did, in my defense, try to fold relationships and social responsibility into the story, and I do offer discussion questions for group reading. But it's still a me-'n'-Jesus story in the most literal sense.) Don't get me wrong; I think it's a good story and a helpful thought experiment, but I think there's more to be thought about, more to be experimented with.

Assuming that my publisher will want a breather before dealing with me as an author again, I thought I could start my secondary thought experiment here, with some imagined scenarios picking up where the Parable left off. So look for occasional posts with the header "Confessions from a Crowded House," which for the record is an homage to the great band of the same name and its singer-songwriter, the brilliant Neil Finn, who I got to see up close and personal recently with his new band Pajama Club.

This is as close to creative writing as I get, so you could really help me out if you seeded my clouds with some of the perplexities you've observed about living faithfully in communion with one another. And while you're at it, do me a favor and give The Parable of the Unexpected Guest a chance; it's super-cheap and may give you and your friends something new to think about, talk about, experiment with.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Looking forwad to seeing the new booklet, Dave!

Brother Steve