Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Pain...

Travis Reed posted the following quote by Walter Brueggemann on his Facebook status last night. I remember seeing Brueggemann speak in person once. He was giving a lecture at the seminary I was attending. He said "son-of-a-bitch" or some such harmless word, and a bunch of people got up and walked out. I didn't really even notice that he said it, I was pretty into what he was talking about. I thought it was amazing.

Anyway, I don't know that I have any real thoughts on this quote at the moment.... but it struck a chord, and I wanted to save it. It's from an interview Travis did with Walter.
From my time with Walter yesterday...He says, "I think the conversation needs to always begin with pain. What pain have you got? And where does the pain come from? And if the person is innocent enough to say I don’t have any pain, then the question is, who do you know that has pain? Or do you think your actions and investments are causing any pain for anyone? I think there is a huge bias in the Bible about taking pain as the primary language of human possibility. We always want to juxtapose joy and pain in the gospel, or in my church tradition we speak of the cost and joy of discipleship. But I think that pain is always privileged in the gospels. So you know the exodus story begins with They groaned and cried out under their pain in Egypt and that led to the whole business. And Jesus encounters it seems to me are largely with people in pain or with the people who are causing the pain...need actual engagement with those who bear the pain of society.. . . the good nuns . . . they kind of move back and forth between places of pain and the Eucharistic table, back and forth. I think that is the story."