(In The Life Of The Church)
16 By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? 17 Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit.
- Jesus, Matthew 7:16-18
I read an article recently that argued for a theme I find compelling (spent the last hour trying to recall where/what, but can’t). The thesis? We can only act in a world we believe in. This is not new. You can find a version of that argument throughout history. I’ve suggested in a few sermons that you can only see what you have language for. This is not wildly different. This relationship between language, belief and world is an interesting one that very quickly prompts my own musings on epistemology, which is the branch of philosophy that asks how do we know what we know.
I often wonder what it would be like to live before the enlightenment. I’m glad to live on this side of it, mostly because of medicine and science, but I think something important and true about worldview died during the enlightenment. Our categories of knowing have been narrowed to the empirically verifiable. In this regard I think faith is hard for post enlightenment people. Cynics might suggest that’s because the enlightenment purged of us of myth, but I find that response even more problematic because I agree with C.S. Lewis who called the gospel the true myth. Tolkein liked the word myth too. For him myth meant something like a deeper truth.
I have also wondered if deconstruction might be experienced more acutely for post-enlightenment people of faith. I think what I mean is that since Immanuel Kant introduced us to categories, we seem more threatened by that which shifts within our own categories (or falls outside of our categories). If we believe a proposition is supposed to be black and white and it turns up grey, instead of being curious our first instinct is to be threatened. The problem is that we don’t believe the proposition can be grey so we don’t know how to act within it or perhaps more often with faith, if we are allowed to.
I think I first heard Brian McLaren say that we need to be generous to the previous versions of ourself. Richard Rohr uses the language of transcend and include, but has recently said that he now thinks it must be include and then transcend … we must learn to include who we were/are before we can transcend that. I think the difficulty some of us might have in blessing previous versions of ourself is that we don’t like what we believed or maybe even who we were. Or there’s this problem. Were not sure if we are allowed to transcend into the places we are curious about. All of this can be hard for enlightenment Christians.
If you’re like me and sometimes unsure if the category shifting going on in your heart is ok, then I wanted to share a bible verse with you. In Matthew 7 Jesus is talking about false prophets. The kind of people who shift categories and can invite you to transcend the current version of yourself. How does one know if the teaching is any good? Jesus solution is both intuitive and beautiful. He says, “You’ll know ‘em by their fruit … bad trees can’t produce good fruit, and good trees don’t produce bad fruit.” So if you are at the intersection of unknowing or confusion, I might suggest praying that the Holy Spirit would help you see the fruit. Is it there? That can only come from God. Is it not there? Then that’s not from God.
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Meet Our Newest HR Team Member
Name: Sam Goff
Why are you in Waco?: I graduated from Baylor in 2015, started working in the warehouse at Magnolia in February 2015, and now work on the Magnolia Media team.
Book/chapter/verse of Bible that is meaningful to you: I love the book of Philippians.
Best Waco Restaurant?: Harvest on 25th. Specifically their Rosemary Apple Hash.
Movie/TV show that you are currently into?: My favorite movies of all time are Scream, Clueless, Crazy Rich Asians, and The Fast and The Furious movies. Favorite TV shows of all time are Schitt's Creek, The Bridge, Veep, Broadchurch, and Arrested Development.
Something we may not know about you?: I can beat Shazam when it comes to figuring out what song is playing - especially anything from 2000-2019.
Homecoming Family Breakfast
Have family members or friends coming in town for Baylor’s Homecoming?
If so, you don’t want to miss out on UBC’s Annual Homecoming Breakfast!
Where: UBC “Backside”
Time: Sunday, October 13th, at 9:30 AM
We also need volunteers to bring food items for this event! Look for a sign-up in the foyer after church on Sunday or contact Jana Parker (Jana_Parker@baylor.edu) if you miss it.
All food items are needed prior to 9:00 AM on Sunday, October 13th, to allow for set up. (As an alternative, feel free to drop items off on Saturday, October 12th, between 10-12 if this is easier. Email Jana ahead of time so she can meet you at the front door of UBC.)
Thank you for helping to welcome our UBC alumni and students’ families during Baylor Homecoming festivities!
St. Francis Liturgy (10/4)
The Feast Day of Saint Francis is Friday, October 4th at 5:30 PM. Join us as we take up the life and legacy of Francis of Assisi as a lens through which to worship God and be formed in the way of Christ. If you have an animal that is important to you, send a picture of it to email@example.com for our slide show.
Advanced Enneagram Workshop
October 13th from 6-9pm and October 14th from 5:30-9pm
Bobo Spiritual Life Center
The Baylor Department of Pastoral Care is excited to announce the visit of renowned Enneagram Teacher and Author Chris Heuertz to the Baylor Campus. On Sunday, October 13 from 6:00-9:00 pm and Monday, October 14 from 5:30-9:00 pm, Chris will be presenting an advanced Enneagram workshop for those who hope to dive deeper into self-awareness regarding their numbers. Snacks will be provided on Sunday, and dinner will be provided on Monday. Please register to attend by clicking here. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions!
Junior/Senior Retreat - October 24-26 - $40
Sign-ups for the retreat will begin on Sunday, September 22. The cost is $40, and you need a $20 deposit to secure deposit. This is a great opportunity to get to know other upper classmen at UBC, have some fun, and learn from one another. If you have any questions, email email@example.com
Parishioner of the Week
The Nances and Jana Parker for cleaning up kid throw up in the foyer during Church.
Homecoming Breakfast 10/13
UBC Kids Teacher Training:
Root Rooms - October 20 after church
Work is Worship
Coffee Makers: Oliver & Michael
Mug Cleaners: Michael & Oliver
Money Counter: Carron
If you have a concern or an idea for UBC that you’d like to share with someone that is not on staff, feel free to contact one of our leadership team members.
Byron Griffin: firstname.lastname@example.org
Kerri Fisher: Kerri_Fisher@baylor.edu
Jeremy Nance: Jeremy.J.Nance@L3T.com
Joanna Sowards: email@example.com
Kathy Krey: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jose Zuniga: email@example.com
Taylor Torregrossa: Taylordtorregrossa@gmail.com
UBC Finance Team
Do you have a question about UBC’s financial affairs? Please feel free to contact any of your finance team members.
JD Newman: JD_Newman@baylor.edu
Catherine Ballas: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jen Carron: email@example.com
Mike Dodson: firstname.lastname@example.org
George Thornton: GeorgecCT1982@gmail.com
UBC HR Team
If you have concerns about staff and would like contact our human resources team, please feel free to email any of the following members.
Erin Albin: email@example.com
Sam Goff: firstname.lastname@example.org
Rebekah Powell: email@example.com
Kristen Richardson: firstname.lastname@example.org