thatmom

real encouragement for real homeschooling moms

francis schaeffer and the cruelty of utopianism

I concluded my podcast this week with this quote from Francis Schaeffer and wanted to put it here for a second glance for those who listened and a first glance for anyone else. I cannot tell you how his words have resonated with me as I have been studying the patriarchy topic for well over a year.

There is nothing like Schaeffer to clear the cobwebs from your head when you are sorting through a thought or a theory. He had the uncanny ability to push aside the window dressings in the evangelical church and draw our attention to the heart of the Gospel message. He also reminds us of how far off the path many in the patriocentric circles have wandered.

One day I was amused to hear Kevin Swanson state that Schaeffer offered lots of good ideas but no real solutions for Christians. Only someone with a private agenda and seeking to find support for it could approach Schaeffer in that way.

Patriocentricity is absent from the pages of Schaeffer’s writings. The truth is that his solution to the problems of this generation of Christians are both too difficult and too simple for those peddling a paradigm. He challenged his listeners to throw themselves onto the claims of Scripture and to embrace a Biblical worldview. But he also warned us that people are made in the image of God, not man, and, as such, must be treated with the utmost of care. Loving God with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength and your neighbor as yourself……simple and difficult all in one.

Here is what he says about the cruelty of utopianism from his book No Little People:

“Utopianism is terribly cruel because it expects the impossible from people. These expectations are not based on reality. They stand in opposition to the genuine human possibilities afforded by the realism of the Scripture. Utopianism can cause harm. In the home, in the man-woman relationship, nothing is more cruel than for the wife or husband to build up a false image in his or her mind and then demand that the husband or wife measure up to this false romanticism. Nothing smashes homes more than this. Such behavior is totally contrary to the Bible’s doctrine of sin. Even after redemption we are not perfect in this life. Utopianism is also harmful in the parent-child relationship. When a parent demands more from his child than the child is capable of giving, the parent destroys him as well as alienates him. If we demand, in any of our relationships, either perfection or nothing, we will get nothing.”

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4 Comments»

  thatmom wrote @

Kevin Swanson’s comment is found on his August 30, 2007 podcast and was made as he compared Schaeffer’s teachings to Bill Gothard’s method of listing “steps of action.”

The Schaeffer quote is found on pages of 28-32 of No Little People. His comments are more expansive than I have quoted and are well worth the time to read and apply to this topic.

  Natalie wrote @

I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth. Beloved, thou doest faithfully whatsoever thou doest to the brethren, and to strangers. KJV

I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are following the truth. Dear friend, you are being faithful to God when you care for the traveling teachers who pass through, even though thery are strangers to you. NLT

3John4-5

Have a blessed day!

  thatmom wrote @

Thank you, Natalie.

One of the things I love about the blogosphere is all the wonderful people I have “met” on the journey. I have been inspired and challenged and encouraged and surely hope to do the same.

  Dominion Family » Homeschool Utopia wrote @

[…] the first podcast Karen quotes Francis Schaeffer in what I consider a slam […]


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