Boj: A Rationale

Writer's Note: I started this fictional account, like my other sudden spurts of fiction writing at this typepad spot, after a much longer period of not writings fiction at all. You can scroll back and find the previous fiction here and over at Pastor's Pal. Some of it is humor, some of it is mythological in nature and all of it fulfills a need in me to tell a story.


   I have done a lot of open thinking here about dying churches and murdered pastors/staff. The Church as institution occupied my thoughts here for a long time. By the Church, I mean the local manifestation of the Kingdom of God, organized and so organizational but intended by its Creator/Redeemer to be organic, naturally occurring,  and not a sprawling mega-plex doomed to dumb down mystical truth for the sake of career advancement and product placement. The state of the American Church today is that of Sacred Monster: a giant, powerful, menacing force, not naturally occurring in Creation. The Free Church movement today cannot even elect its political candidates any more for the same reason(s) that all monsters ultimately fail; the atmosphere around them changes, they cannot adapt and soon someone is chipping their remaining art off a cave wall somewhere.

   Even the dinosaurs died.

   So, I am back to fiction for awhile. It is sporadic, my posting of this long story about Boj, Golda and Tret. The arduous act of filing fiction every day is beyond me now. I have to read novels to remember how to write dialog, since much of my fiction turns out to be stream of consciousness, wherein I try to decide why these people are doing what they are doing rather than more simply describe their actions. I am an Interventionist, not a Deist. After all, a Deist is just an Atheist who has not lived long enough.

   So, I have been reading novels. Three or four a week, purchased online for pennies on the dollar. Bernard Malamud, evil Larry McMurtry, a host of Southwestern Native American and Mexican writers bared their genius to me. I have spent some time with the fiction(s) in the Holy Bible as well.

   Oh, really, you say, my fundamentalist friend? No fiction?

   Please, then, explain the parables to me or leave me very much alone, and then we will start on the allegories. Prepare to be savaged.

   If all goes as planned, Boj will return to cyberspace tomorrow and several posts will appear in succession. I think I am arguing for the end of thaumaturgical religion, for good and all. What do you believe if all the things you believe about the power and goodness of God are consistently belied by the happenstance(s) of your experience? How do you reasonably discuss the existence and benevolence of God in a mean-spirited, mediocrity promoting age when religion has sunk to a defiant, hate-mongering entity, hanging around to demand its prerogatives but, like the zero in mathematics, establishing a place but bringing no value of its own to that place?

   I am going to try, for my own sake. My attempt will be done in narrative. I have been reading novels late at night and early in the morning(s) to try to find out how to do what a fiction writer does: communicate deep truth clearly. It is harder  to do this than to report or opine.

   In addition, I should say I hope to tell a good story well.


3 thoughts on “Boj: A Rationale”

  1. Rick,
    Elmore Leonard is one who manages to “nail” dialogue for me. Discovered him late because he never appeared on any of my seminary reading lists. Check him out if you have not already.
    Les Morriss

  2. Rick,
    when you say
    ‘What do you believe if all the things you believe about the power and goodness of God are consistently belied by the happenstance(s) of your experience?’
    are you making a generalization to lead us to question why, if we think God has a miracle to remedy our diagnosis or condition, the personal conversative happening(s) we encounter deny our rationale to the belief in a good God?
    or is the above mentioned quote rather a rhetorical whereby the answer is ‘Faith is the Victory!’?

  3. It is kind of disturbing when questions of this magnitude are left hanging … Does that mean you don’t have the answers? (I expect you to, you know.) Does that mean I have to answer them for myself? (Yeah, probably should anyway, right?) Well then, my first thought was to erect a dichotomy between what the world wants me to think is truth and what I think is truth. But the exercise of fashioning a sustainable subjective existentialist environment, where truth as I see it lives, is exhausting–and limiting to say the least. So, I defaulted to The Real Truth: (1) Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life” (Jn. 14:6); (2) They overcame him (the devil) by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony (Rev. 12:11) (you taught me this verse); (3) Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine! Oh what a foretaste of glory divine! Heir of salvation, purchase of God, born of His spirit, washed in his blood.
    The list could go on and on, but these basic answers will do.
    These are your answers, too, right?
    Sandee S.

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