Themes of L’Abri

In light of the L’Abri conference coming up this February, I thought it might be a good idea to highlight five themes of the ministry of L’Abri and Francis Schaeffer. Hopefully they will give you a good idea of the perspective of Christianity that L’Abri is taking.

1. The Truthfulness of Christianity (True Truth)

We need to rediscover the objective reality of Christianity, really see the God who has acted concretely in time and space. Christianity is historically true; God has involved Himself in the flow of history. This means that it isn’t just “my truth,” or what works for me, because if Christianity is true at all, it is true for all. And whether we believe it or not, it remains true. It also means that it is consistent with all reality around us, and therefore that God speaks into all reality. We must see reality as God sees it.

2. The Reality of the Supernatural

Scripture tells us that the God who is there is the God who is here. We must not live by simply what we can see. The unseen is just as real as what we do see, and our prayer life must reflect this reality. We will bear fruit that God has ordained because God is here. We need not pray in light of it as a ritual, but as a reality. God hears us. Really. Because the Christian life is not about the extraordinary, but about the ordinary that God works through. The spiritual aspect is the most important–once we are rooted in that reality, lives will be transformed.

3. The Humanness of Spirituality

To be spiritual is to fulfill our humanness–everything that it means to be fully human. We are called in Christ to rediscover what it means to be human in this world. We need to feel comfortable in accepting our Creaturely-ness–and to do this, we must bow before God as a creature, accepting our place in Creation. We must accept our limits, rest in being human, and be at peace with our Creator. We can look at our corner of Creation and find contentment. And ultimately, we can are reminded of what we are being saved to–a glorious, redeemed world in which that relationship will be completely made right and restored to its full glory and purpose.

4. The Significance of the Fall

The shadow of the Fall and the utter brokenness of this world runs very, very deep. There is a dissonance in all of creation, even to the Christian. The consequences of sin are hideous and corruption is so widespread. Much of the Western world has been convinced that we can fix everything, that we can civilize all of the world, but the problems we struggle with are so incredibly hard to get rid of: brokenness within our families, bigotry, educational reforms, politics, etc. Only with Christ will the groanings of creation be ceased–there are no quick fixes. While no enjoyment of creation should be taken away, we must live in light of the evil, carry an awareness of the shadow of the Fall, and we must bleed and weep with this broken world.

5. The Hope and Good News of the Gospel

God has saving designs for his entire creation…. a new heaven and a new earth, where he will restore not only our souls, but also our physical bodies and every aspect of creation. Brokenness happens at every level, therefore salvation will happen at every level. God’s entire creation is given over to Christ. We have been born anew of God into this world, and we are working with God to redeem it. This has huge implications–every aspect of the world should be brought into the light of Christ; therefore we are called to be agents of change and transformation. We must look after our patch of Creation and love the man next door.

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About Colleen Kelly

I graduated from Mizzou in May '09 with an English degree and joined staff with Veritas soon after. I'm originally from St. Louis, but love living in Columbia. Things I love: reading (anything and everything), walking, being outside, coffee, conversation, theology, exploring, saturdays, and adventures.
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