Nov 1, 2007

Purple State of Mind, Take This Bread.

I've been feeling a bit overwhelmed this week with the amount of work I've got to do on my book; As well as depressed over how little I've managed to do, and how little I've been contributing financially in my marriage. Not to mention my car has been in the shop for 8 days.

Last week Larry was shooting a video, which was great because that meant he didn't have to write boring fund raising copy. But for the second time we've missed a screening our friend Craig Detweiller's film, A Purple State of Mind.
It opened the City of Angels Film Festival last week. Craig co-chairs Fuller Theological Seminary's Reel Spirituality program, where they integrate faith and film. Here's a synopsis from the Purple website

Craig Detweiler and John Marks have known each other for twenty-five years. When they roomed together as sophomores at Davidson College, they were devout Christians. It was Craig's first year in the faith, John's last. After college, they parted ways, and when they met again, years later, they never talked about what happened... until now... Their conversation starts as a bull session between pals and becomes a story about how people make friends, and how they lose them; how people change, how they grow, and how they deal with the big stuff: death, sex, the meaning of life, God. The conversation between Craig and John captures in all its intimacy and difficulty a one on one reckoning between two people who want to understand each other but won't compromise their beliefs.

Now this is a film I am determined to see, and I don't want to wait for Netflix.

I emailed Craig my apologies and frustration over missing his film. I also wanted to tell him about a book I stumbled upon. Take This Bread by Sara Miles. An amazing story of a terribly inconvenient, 21st century conversion. Here's an excerpt I condensed from her prologue....

Mine is a personal story of an unexpected and terribly inconvenient Christian conversion, told by a very unlikely convert: a blue-state, secular intellectual; a lesbian, a left-wing journalist with a habit of skepticism. I'm not the person my reporter colleagues ever expected to see exchanging blessings with street-corner evangelists. I'm hardly the person George Bush had in mind to be running a “faith-based charity.” ....

... At a moment when right-wing American Christianity is ascendant, when religion worldwide is rife with fundamentalism and exclusionary ideological crusades, I stumbled into a radically inclusive faith centered on sacraments and action. What I found wasn't about angels, or going to church, or trying to be “good” in a pious, idealized way. It wasn't about arguing a doctrine--the Virgin birth, predestination, the sinfulness of homosexuality and divorce––or pledging blind allegiance to a denomination. I was, as the prophet said, hungering and thirsting for righteousness. I found it at the eternal and material core of Christianity: body, blood, bread, wine poured out freely, shared by all. I discovered a religion rooted in the most ordinary yet subversive practice: a dinner table where everyone is welcome, where the poor, the despised and the outcasts are honored. ... In this book I look at the Gospel that moved me, the bread that changed me and the work that saved me, to begin a spiritual and an actual communion across the divides.

You can read more about Sara and her book on her website.

For more on Craig and his movie, check out A Purple State Of Mind. They're taking their show on the road, so check the Purple Website to see if it's coming to your town.

Halloween is over. Today is All Saint's Day. I'm inspired by saints everywhere who are living out their faith, no matter how inconvenient, difficult or challenging.

And now I'll get back to my book and stop whining ...

1 comment:

Jen said...

Thanks for recommending Take This Bread. I'm reading it now and enjoying it so much.

Post a Comment