Item description for Blowing The Lid Off The God-Box: Opening Up To A Limitless Faith (Explorefaith.Org Book) by Anne Robertson...
Overview Robertson's analysis starts with the ministry of Jesus, who blew the lid off everyone's God-box by constantly challenging his followers with the unexpected. Subsequent chapters examine the God-boxes people create with scripture, worship, and political and social agendas.
Publishers Description What's in your God-box? Each of us, says author Anne Robertson, builds our own way of understanding God-our "God-box"-- and fills it up with bits of scripture, wisdom, and our experiences of God at work in our lives. It's a perfectly good way to puzzle out what God means to us. Encountering God through our human limitations, we learn something about the meaning of Incarnation. But to say that our experience of God is the only valid one is to put a lid on the box and create an idol. This book is about examining our God-boxes and bursting them wide open. Blowing the Lid Off the God-Box starts with the ministry of Jesus - who blew the lid off everyone's God-box by constantly challenging his followers with the unexpected. Subsequent chapters examine the God-boxes we create with scripture, worship, and political and social agendas.
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Reviews - What do customers think about Blowing The Lid Off The God-Box: Opening Up To A Limitless Faith (Explorefaith.Org Book)?
Blowing the Lid Off the God-Box Dec 24, 2007
Too often we lack the humility to let God be God. Our thinking about God becomes a projection of our own limited beliefs and prejudices. This short book puts the issue into perspective.
Refusing to stay put... Jun 4, 2005
Anne Robertson, a United Methodist minister in New England, writes, 'There are few things more upsetting than a God who refuses to stay put...'
Anne Robertson gives a wonderful, personal development of the idea of God being bigger and broader than one can possibly imagine. I've often used the example in my preaching that God is more than any idea we could ever have of God; this is rather difficult for many people to grasp, but Robertson has a wonderful way of exploring this aspect of God. It can be challenging and disconcerting, because it is far from the norm in our everyday, quantifiable and measurable world. The modern world is uncomfortable with ambiguity, and often terrified of the unknown. Speaking of the women who went to the tomb on the first Easter morning, Robertson writes, 'The very thing that frightened the women - the unknown and the unexpected - is that same thing that frightens us today when we consider that God might be larger and more complex than our particular experience of God.'
Robertson does her writing in confessional style (this is a literary/theological designation, rather than a penitential or 'just-the-facts, maam' kind of admission of guilt); she goes through her experiences both conservative and liberal, both within and outside the church, and casts her ideas for God's reality and God's presence with us in terms that many readers will find very familiar and easy to relate to.
Her central cipher is that of the God-box. A box is a container (even when it is empty). Most of us (if not all of us) have a container of sorts, into which we pour our ideas of what and who God is. Even professional theologians (or perhaps most especially professional systematic theologians) do not escape the trap of trying to define God so precisely as to render God less than who God truly is, and can be. One crucial element Robertson identifies for the God-box is keeping it open in the context of community - what is in the box needs to be valuable and recognised as such by members of the community, and what other community members have in their God-boxes can be shared and used to enrich one's own. Careful not to make community a panacea for all ills, she nonetheless highlights the advantages, and shows the disadvantages of the 'go-it-alone' approach.
The book continues with a look at common and uncommon images of God, the way in which we think about God both in scripture and tradition, the use and misuse of institutional religion and community, and finishes with a chapter that develops her device of the God-box in context of creedal statements familiar to many Christians through the centuries.
This is a wonderful book to use for private and group study. Well-written and engaging both personally and spiritually, it is uplifting and thought-provoking in many ways.
God is . . . . May 29, 2005
Theologians and writers like Leslie Weatherhead, J.B. Phillips, Marcus Borg, Jon Dominic Crossan, Elaine Pagels, and Barbara Brown Taylor have long been helping us to expand our experiencing of God to counteract what seems to be human nature to pin God down to be within our capacity to understand. Anne Robertson throws her hat in the ring with this wonderful little book and encourages us to not only be open to our experience of God but to the experience others have of God as well. She reminds us, through both her personal sharing as well as her teaching and preaching, that our challenge is to keep our minds open as we live, breathe, walk and talk our life in the spirit, allowing God to light our path. As the motto for our denomination has been this past year, "Don't put a period where God has put a comma," our faith journey can be much more vital and life-giving when we don't assume we know all there is to know about God. Thank you, Anne, for sharing your thinking with such clarity and grace.
SIMPLY PROFOUND May 24, 2005
United Methodist minister, Anne Robertson, has contributed a challenging work, inspiring Christians to examine their beliefs and prejudices. Using a humble approach, she describes her opinion that believers, young or old, new to the faith or "old timers," risk the danger of isolating God by reducing Him to stereotypes and defining Him through holding to the expected, the norm, the safe. She points out the ways in which we limit God and ourselves by confining ourselves to traditional and habitual responses and practices, and suggests we examine our individual and collective "boxes" in which we place a God too large to be contained. Whether you fall into the category of liberal or conservative, Republican or Democrat, Baptist or Episcopalian, this book will stretch your mind and heart. An easy read, it is a profound work.
"Finally, someone gets it!" May 13, 2005
In her beautifully flowing and extraordinarily insightful first publication, Anne Robertson brings her expansive and Jesus-centered Belief to her readers, challenging us not to allow Faith to become a mere reflection of our own, privatized and sometimes very convenient religious beliefs..or to cut it out if we already have. In beautiful, short chapters, she calls on each of us to allow God to be the One doing the defining. Calling on Scripture, as well as personal and professional experience, she is at once serious and light-hearted, many times using her wonderful gift of "getting to the point" in unique, thought-provoking and often humorous ways. She tackles difficult moral dilemmas and human frailties, and gives us a new, more open way to look at them. She throws the gauntlet down to those who co-op God for their own private advancement, for the "my way or the highway" type of sectioning that modern religions can break down into..leading to personal and sometimes national wars: if both sides fervently believe God is on their side, one side (or both) has placed God in a box. This book will help each person of Faith blow off the lid to see the bigger picture, and help prevent one from closing off to many of God's Creation's wondrous aspects. As she says in discussing the tensions caused by different types of services (organ music; drums and guitars; skits, etc.), "Recognize that your way of worship isn't the sum total of worship itself." The Prelude alone will make your realize you are dealing with a writer and thinker of the first order in Anne Roberston..a fresh, new and most welcome voice in Christian letters. You'll be wanting to continue on immediately! As you proceed, you'll think you can hear God saying, "Finally, someone gets it!" Blowing the Lid off the God-box is a delightful read, and Anne's fervent belief in Love as the basic building block of all existence wafts across the pages like the scents of blossoms in the spring winds. When you finish this book, you'll realize that by offering it, she is telling you she loves the reflection of God in you, too.