Wednesday, April 02, 2008

How I became a liberal

I do not remember deciding to be a liberal. It was more a matter of having been classified as a liberal by others. I was facinated by American democracy, however, and remember staying up late in August of 1956 listening (we did not have television) to the Democratic and Republican conventions. The Republicans went with the incumbent, Dwight Eisenhauer for president and the Democrats nominated Adlai Stevenson to opose him. Modern political conventions are boring in comparison.

Four years later I did choose to make some life altering decisions. Nancy and I were married and I discovered a relationship with God, a gift giving God. Thirty two years later, in writing a Theology of Ministry essay, I recalled this latter decision.

" . . . I awakened to the reality of a gift-giving God and the faith that opened the channel of personal relationship between us. Ministry, to date, has not been something I thought about but rather something I did in response to faith."1

I was not very good at responding to this new found faith as I began but my list of faith ideals did include the following:

  • "You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind." (Matthew 22:37, NAB)

  • "You shall love your neighbor as yourself." (Matthew 22:39,NAB)

  • "I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least (hungry, thirsty, naked, imprisoned) of mine, you did for me." (Matthew 25:40 NAB)2

As near as I can tell, it was taking these ideals seiously that got me classified as a liberal.


1 - "In Service to a gift giving God", Deacon Digest, November 1991
2 - See my posting "Christmas Message" on 2/26/08.

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