Dear Folks -
We had some technical difficulties at Ordinary Life this week. The audio visual person who operates the booth at the museum where we have been meeting failed to show up so we had no good lighting, sound or ability to show the slide presentation that went with my talk. I think we can put the slides up on the Ordinary Life website.
I began my talk this week talking about my experience with magic as a hobby. Magic tricks fall into one of two categories - either being disappointing (as in, "So that's how that works.") or difficult (as in, "I'm going to have to practice this for hours to be able to do it.")
What got me thinking about this is that many of the sayings of Jesus are either disappointing or difficult - or both. We want magical and easy answers to life's dilemma and we don't get that. We get the difficult message of "love your neighbor" (who turns out to be everyone) and "lose your life." We want something other, different.
The saying I look at this week is one most people have never heard: "Be passersby." This saying comes from the Gospel of Thomas and I spent a good bit of time talking about how and why we have the particular books in the Christian Scriptures that we do. I personally believe that this is most important information for us to know.
After this, I seek to apply what this saying might mean for us.
The full text I spoke from is below.