Remembering a Ragamuffin

“The greatest single cause of atheism in the world today is Christians who acknowledge Jesus with their lips and walk out the door and deny Him by their lifestyle. That is what an unbelieving world simply finds unbelievable.” — Brennan Manning

9781434764188_hiI know that Brennan Manning is often accused of being too inclusive and a bit wishy-washy. His too inclusive message gave many the courage to stop long enough to hear Jesus’ invitation to a relationship. His too inclusive message sounds an awful lot like Jesus’ too inclusive message, if you ask me. Not perfectly so, I suspect, for none of us is perfect. God used Manning and others to help me see things differently than I used to I guess.

Anyhow, when I used to read that one day soon most of us would get our news from social media and not regular news outlets I did not grasp how true that would be. And I was, I admit, a bit reluctant to say goodbye to the journalism I studied and at least briefly practiced and which influences still how I see the world.  Still, today I may get some information from what have traditionally known (for my lifetime, at least) as news sources — but the news I most want to know I do usually get via others who happen to convey it using social media.

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It was on Facebook that I read that Brennan Manning died on Friday. I followed up that statement with a Google search and found only a few reflections on this man whose writings have impacted many. Charisma News had the most information.

I remember reading his Ragamuffin Gospel — or maybe having portions read to me when I was a students. I’d not heard so much raw honestly that was not about sensationalism before. I’d heard the “look at me!  I used to be awful and then God came along and now I’m wonderful!!” kinds of testimonies before. Manning seemed to say “look at Jesus who takes awful ragamuffins and loves them and transforms them because that’s who He is and what He does.”

That is a message I still need. You probably do to, huh?

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