Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Doing theology in the everyday

Each of us has a theological work to do. We may think we haven’t but we can’t help it, because every time we make a decision, or refuse to make one, we are showing whether we are with Jesus or against hi. We are saying something about what we think Christianity is. There never has been a time when even the most passive could really allow a Church to make all their moral decisions for them, because the decision to obey is itself a moral decision and can have as many varied motives, from cowardice to true humility, as any other decision. Nor are the most emancipated present-day believers making their moral decisions in a vacuum. The cloud of witnesses from all ages and places surrounds them. They choose with the Church, or against it, in some sense of other, and there are many senses. So also our decisions form part of the tradition, and create the material from which others draw in making their decisions, and all these decisions depend on the kind of notions we have about what God is doing, to us and around us.

Our practical decisions display theological premises, whether we like it or not. To say ‘I’m not interested in theology,’ is to display an ignorance as gross as that betrayed by people who smugly disclaim interest in politics, not knowing that every day is crammed with political acts, from greeting certain people and not others in the street, to posting letters, or buying a newspaper. Each of these acts springs from a given political doctrine, however unperceived it may be. A person may not even know the meaning of the word theology, but there is scarcely a conscious act which does not express a theological position of some kind, and even unconscious motivations often grow from the theological views of our forbears.

Rosemary Haughton, in The Knife Edge of Experience, pages 31-2.
Quoted on pages 241-2 of The Lion Christian Meditation Collection
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