“Stay open, Bradley” – Brad Jersak

One of the greatest gifts my mother ever gave me (along with introducing me to Jesus as a living person, not just a doctrine or idea) was this: “Bradley, you must stay open.”

As a young Bible College student, I was quite enjoying the certitude of my locked-down religious doctrines. Complex systems like dispensationalism or cessationism (which I won’t waste your time defining) offered surety. I exchanged freedom of thought for sterile pseudo-peace from the very terrors those systems generated. “Stay open, Bradley.”

This troubled my mom because she knew that the Spirit can never be so easily pinned to a dissection table. “Stay open, Bradley.”

And then my journey through classical Calvinism helped me reach rock bottom on my addiction to theological boxes. “Stay open, Bradley.”

What I “know” of “God” today is the simple experience of unfailing mercy and a whole lot of stammering, inadequate words to describe that mystery (which is theology at its best). I “know” “God” is the Love revealed to me–that which I’ve witnessed–in Jesus Christ.

Not that I’ve arrived. “Stay open, Bradley.”

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