I recently picked up a copy of The Shack
by William P. Young. For those unfamiliar with the book, here's a synopsis:
Mackenzie Allen Phillips's youngest daughter, Missy, has been abducted during a family vacation, and evidence that she may have been brutally
murdered is found in an abandoned shack deep in the Oregon wilderness. Four years later, in this midst of his great sadness, Mack receives a
suspicious note, apparently from God, inviting him back to that shack for a weekend. Against his better judgment he arrives at the shack on wintry
afternoon and walks back into his darkest nightmare. What he finds there will change his life forever.
The premise is that this man, having lost a child to the actions of a psychopath, searches for meaning and finds it in a conversation with "God". I
haven't finished the book, but it had a previous owner who underlined specific sentences which I assume carried particular meaning for him/her. I'd
like the denizens of ATS to examine these quotes with me and explore the veracity of their claims.
"Declaring independence will result in evil because apart from Me, you can only draw upon yourself."
So independence is the seed of evil, apparently. This, in itself, gave me pause. How often has our species seized its independence and found
prosperity as a result?
"Relationships are never about power, and one way to avoid the will to power is to choose to limit oneself - to serve."
How about you married folks out there? Or parents? Does this sound like your relationship, or a relationship you'd like to have? Servant and master?
My relationships have never been about serving, but sharing. There's a difference.
Definition of SERVE
a : to be a servant
b : to do military or naval service
: to assist a celebrant as server at mass
a : to be of use
What does "share" mean?
Definition of SHARE
: to divide and distribute in shares : apportion —usually used with out
a : to partake of, use, experience, occupy, or enjoy with others
That's interesting. The nature of a relationship is to use someone, in contrast to enjoying or experiencing with them? The author used the word
"serve", not "share". That's my understanding here.
"To begin with, that you can't grasp the wonder of my nature is rather a good thing. Who wants to worship a God who can be fully comprehended, eh?
Not much mystery in that."
A god whose nature remains uncertain. Seems a little risky to me. Why would you worship a being you cannot understand? How do you know the true goals,
the true motives, the true thoughts and true stance of such a being, if you cannot fully comprehend it? That's like driving a car whose functions and
controls are not fully understood.
"Submission is not about authority and it is not obedience; it is all about relationships of love and respect."
Then why are we doing all the submitting? Authority and obedience is what we are taught, and then we are taught that this is love. Authority is the
means, and obedience is the fruit. Love is the motivation. And through that equation, we are encouraged to submit in all ways. So how does the above
sentence make any sense?
"The world is broken because in Eden you abandoned relationship with us to assert your own independence."
Pardon me if I'm wrong, but that fruit in the garden didn't make Eve look up and say, "Adam, I'm sick of this place. Let's get out. Let's go to
"God" made the decision to sever that relationship because he could have put that tree anywhere, but he put it in the one place they could reach it.
How is that our fault?
"Being my follower is not trying to 'be like Jesus', it means for your independence to be killed."
There it is again. 'Independence is evil, you have to come back to us so you can live forever under our thumb.' Surely I don't have to point out
what's wrong with this?
And here's my favorite part. Jesus says:
"I came as a man to complete a wonderful picture in how we made you. From the first day we hid the woman within the man, so that at the right time
we could remove her from within him. We didn’t create man to live alone; she was purposed from the beginning. By taking her out of him, he birthed
her in a sense. We created a circle of relationship, like our own, but for humans. She, out of him, and now all the males, including me, birthed
through her; and all originating, or birthed, from God."
Um...? I'm not sure where to begin with that one. Incestuous relationships bring spiritual fulfillment? Independence is Satanic? Submission is not
about love, but we are all encouraged to submit to the will of the highest of high? We're supposed to serve, rather than share? I don't know. Maybe
I'm just dumb.
So what does ATS think? I'm looking forward to the discussion. But please keep it civil, and don't be put off by conflicting ideas. Friction creates
sparks, and sparks provide illumination...as long as you keep your eyes open.
Let the discussion begin!
edit on 18-3-2013 by AfterInfinity because: (no reason given)