I’ve never heard the term “radical center” before hearing a clip from one of Bono’s interviews. It caught me immediately and I tucked it away to dwell on and have it permeate my being. Why? well…
I’m a pretty middle-of-the-road kind of girl. I tend to be quiet (at least until you get to know me), and not be considered over-dramatic. I am a Jesus follower – one who believes that Jesus walked and talked on earth – and one who tries to live according to his teachings and example.
However – I’m not of flag waving personality, and I don’t tend to enjoy heated debates on topics of faith (frankly any topic). I don’t have strong opinions on certain topics that many others do: I see many people who are louder and smarter than me have strong opinions on either side of the these topics, all with good sounding reasonings. So I do not join in. I’m not a strong evangelist or a preacher. I don’t believe any of these things are wrong – in fact, we need the variety of people and personalities in society and in the church. However, there have been many a sermon where my take-away was that I should be doing more of one or all of these things… or am I ashamed of my faith?
So – I’ve struggled. I by no means want to be considered a “fence-sitter” or “lukewarm”. Guilt- feelings seem to come easily to me. I am so aware of the fact that I trip over myself regularly (both literally and figuratively), so I know I mess up. So I look to the Bible to see what is said, and then I look to Jesus to see how what is said is reflected in his example and teachings. I look to society and all the good and bad within, I look to science and history to see the continued learning and experiences we as humans have. I look to “study to show myself approved… rightly dividing the word of truth…” while admittedly not being overly scholarly. I listen, observe, feel, involve myself as much as I possibly can in life. I still remember the time when I made the specific decision to do my best to always show love and positivity to those around me, and continue to try to live that out. Yet, I still go through times of wondering – am I lukewarm?
Hearing the words “Radical Center” got me on a new path. A new determination to change my thinking patterns.
Living a life of love, questioning both extremes and putting it through the “what does it seem that Jesus would have me do” test. Opening my eyes to the needs of the world around me – from immediate family and neighbours, to people in the far reaches of the world. Advocating, reaching out and helping, and encouraging others as best as I can. Living a life of peace as far as possible. That is radical stuff.
I am thankful.