Monday, February 27, 2012

Kristina Robb-Dover, Interview #165

Name: Kristina Robb-Dover

Where you live: Atlanta, Georgia

What you do as a vocation or avocation? Minister, Writer and Blogger

Your two favorite books: The Bible and Brothers' Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky

Your two favorite songs:
A very hard choice, because just about anything that Bruce Springsteen sings I fall in love with; but of late my two favorite songs would be "The Cave," by the band Mumford & Sons, and "Come Down O Love Divine"

Why you are interested in spirituality?
I'm interested in spirituality because for me "spirituality" is all about what it means to be truly human and in relationship with God. I'm curious about how the Holy Spirit works in the world and how we as human beings respond to and are transformed by Her work.  These days I'm working on a book for those who would call themselves "spiritual but not religious": "Grace Sticks: The Bumper Sticker Gospel for Restless Souls," is a spiritual memoir told through the lens of bumper stickers; I guess I'd like to think that even the most ordinary of things, even something "cheaper by the dozen" like a bumper sticker, can in all of our comings and goings mediate God's grace for us in the form of purpose, truth and life.

Your favorite quote:
"It's the test of a good religion whether you can joke about it." -G.K. Chesterton

Your favorite web sites:
These days "favorite" for me translates as the site I spend the most time on, which, as it turns out, is my own: "Fellowship of Saints and Sinners," hosted by the online magazine, Beliefnet, is a virtual "church" for real people with real questions about God and life.

Your hero?
Marguerite Porete.  She was executed in 1310 by a corrupt church hierarchy wedded to money and power.  Her crime? Writing a book, "The Mirror of Simple Souls," which was a labor of love for spiritually hungry souls who sought to know and experience God's love in their lives.  Ultimately, Porete's crime, as I see it, was to really believe in the full import of Divine Love, which did not depend on a church to mediate it.

A spiritual lesson you hope to learn?
I would like to learn more about how to experience the joy C.S. Lewis speaks of when he writes that we, when offered "infinite joy," are like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in the slums because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea."  The joy I'm talking about here is a kind of grounding in God's goodness and love that doesn't depend on the level of pleasure or pain in my life.  I would like to get to a place where I am able to experience this kind of deep joy regardless of my circumstances.  I think it's a bit along the lines of what the apostle Paul speaks about when he writes that he has learned to be "content" in all circumstances.

A place in the world where you feel spiritually "connected?"
I have felt most spiritually connected in two places: in a refugee camp working with south Sudanese widows and orphans and seeing their faith, hope, and love in the midst of the most trying of circumstances; and hearing good live music, whether it's at a very cozy, local music joint called "Eddie's Attic," where various bands play, everyone is welcome, and you come as you are, or in a huge amphitheater with Bruce Springsteen crooning away at a high decibel level. (Good) music heals spirits and brings people together, I think.

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