Wrecked my Week

The last time I remember seeing my copy of Interrupted by Jen Hatmaker was at Dunkin’ Donuts. I thought I had lost it, but I may have just left it laying on the table and walked away. Ms. Hatmaker’s ideas ruined my cup of coffee, my weekend and, as it turns out, the book’s premise sucked all the words out of me for several days.

The publisher promised this edition had been revised and expanded. Not true! It is as painful as the first edition. No revision there!

It started to unravel when at a critical point in my self-evaluation I read a quote on page 71:

“…power, prestige and possessions are the three things that prevent us from recognizing and receiving the reign of God…. The only ones who can accept the proclamation of the reign are those who have nothing to protect, not their own self-image or their reputation, their possessions, their theology, their principles, or their certitudes. And these are called ‘the poor,’ anawim in Hebrew.” (Richard Rohr, Simplicity Crossroads, 2003).

Power, prestige and possessions.

I found the book—Interrupted—it had fallen (?) into my paper recycle box. Ms. Hatmaker needs to know that her book is not the only one I’m reading. One writer gave me an assignment for the weekend: BECOME REMARKABLE. Only remarkable brands and products are going to survive—only the remarkable will even get any one’s attention.

Another writer told me I must experience my “Awesome.” Another says we must “Wow” our customer at every encounter—make their experience with our product wow-full. We also need to capture attention in the midst of all the noise and clamor for attention. 3000 commercials a day screaming for our ear, time, money, allegiance.

Since I don’t have many or much of the three, I’m compelled to say that a person or company has to have a modicum of power, prestige and possessions to survive, surely to impact people with our message. How can we be remarkable and be downward mobile at the same time?

Hatmaker’s book sub-title is “When Jesus wrecks your comfortable Christianity.” I don’t know if it was Jesus and I don’t remember it being comfortable, but something has been wrecked.

I know and appreciate the point. Ironic, the people who have indicated to me the most interest in Interrupted are those who have had enough possessions to bless the Kingdom people and work. If we get rid of all our power, prestige and possessions, we have nothing to send to World Vision or Compassion, Inc or have enough power to defend those without. We have no forum or platform from which to proclaim the Good News with credibility.

P3 are gifts to be shared. They are not to be abused or tossed away carelessly, they are gifts and tools and provide options.

Okay, I’ve had my say. Jen Hatmaker says….

“The pursuit of ascension is crippling and has stunted my faith more than any other evil I’ve battled. It has saddled me with so much to defend, and it doesn’t deliver. I need more and more of what doesn’t work. I’m insatiable, and ironically, the more I accumulate, the less I enjoy any of it. Instead of satisfaction, it produces toxic fear in me; I’m always one slip away from losing it all.”

“The path of descent becomes our own liberation. We are no longer compelled to be right and are thus relieved from the burden…. We are released from the idols of greed, control and status.” (p 72-73 NavPress, 2014)

Now that I’ve found the book, I suppose I’ll finish it and let Jesus do His work in me. He is not trying to wreck my life; He is trying to clear space for that which is richer, fuller, deeper.

D. Dean Benton

Benton Quest House


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