Living the Theme: How to Make Fire (Theology)

Reflections on Theology

I like to say that I’m tracing the intersection between big ideas and human experience, between theology and real life. ~ Krista Tippett, American journalist and author

Liberal theology is not for the faint of heart. It points us in a general direction without telling us the specific destination. . . . It invites us to live with ambiguity without giving in to facile compromise; to engage in dialogue without trying to control the conversation; to be open to change without accepting change too casually . . . ~ Rev. Dr. Paul Rasor, Unitarian Universalist Minister

Here in America in the early-twenty-first century, a progressive doctrine of God — a theology per se, from theo, God, and logos, word — must speak adequately both of ultimate reality as creative process and the hope for liberation and wholeness of all God’s children, not in the next life, but in the midst of earthly existence. ~ Rev. Rebecca Ann Parker, from A House for Hope

Theological questions seem to grapple with at least five primary areas of concern, including: human nature and purpose; the nature of God; death and what happens next; the role of the church; the source of religious authority. ~ Rev. Jenn Crow


  • To become familiar with theological language and begin to explore our own beliefs in relationship to those of others around us.
  • To lay the foundations for our theological exploration throughout the year

Taking it Home

Consider creating a “Big Questions” jar with paper and pen handy nearby. Invite your family to contribute their big questions to the jar on a regular basis — weekly or daily. Then, choose a time to all meet together and talk about the big questions, sharing your own perspective and listening to each other. This isn’t a time to find “the” answer, just to begin to engage in dialogue around our own meaning-making. Use these responses as kindling for your search.

Here are some questions to get you started:

  • What, if anything, is God?
  • What is our purpose on this earth?
  • Why do bad things happen?
  • Where are we headed?
  • What is the nature of humanity?
  • What do we owe to one another?
  • How are we connected?
  • How do we know right from wrong?