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Belief and Imagination

People have a very difficult time believing things they cannot imagine.”

Last week our professor shared that quote from Cardinal Newman during class. Ever since I’ve been pondering it, because I think it has some very important ramifications.

Belief, intellect, tends to be the target of much talk of the Christian faith. Occasionally we swing in the other direction and craft our message in more emotive terms.

But imagination? Imagination rarely seems to be considered of value, and much of the time we almost view it with suspicion.

Yet we are not only thinking or feeling creatures, we are imaginative as well, and that imagination can deeply shape how and what we believe and feel.

So might we, as singers and writers, professors and pastors, have an obligation to speak of the Christian story in a way that is not only true, but also imaginatively rich?

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Mason is a husband to Melinda, seminary student, youth pastor, blogger and freelance writer in, Grand Rapids, MI. He is passionate about theology, community and justice. What little time is left amidst his busy schedule is devoted to reading, coffee snobbery and a new adventure in home brewing.