The Taser's Edge

Now That’s Thinking With Your Bowels

In the midst of this still-ongoing most stressful time of my life, I preemptively set up some self-rules. When reading the Bible, I’m only reading the Gospels and the Psalms. The Gospels because Jesus is there and it’s easy to forget what he’s like even if you just saw him last week, and the Psalms because suffering and faith and perseverance and grace are there (and Jesus is there and it’s easy to forget what he’s like even if you just saw him in the Gospels). Beyond the Bible, I’m not reading anything challenging to my soul.

Don’t worry. By “challenging,” in this case, I don’t mean “stretching” or “growing,” but I’ll take the long way around to tell you what I do mean…

It took me a long time to realize that despite what other people used to tell me, I am not primarily an intellectual person. Intellect is great, and it’s gotten me some successes, but what I’m really about is getting into things with my guts. I think viscerally (and I mean for you to think of that visually).

To think is not to sit somewhere safe and away from where real things are happening (whether in ivory tower or pastor’s study). It is to head into the boxing ring with your whole self, but to fight with your face. Yes, that’s a violent image, but it’s about offering up my vulnerability to the blows of the text in order to experience it fully. You get bloodied up that way, but it’s worth it.

Except sometimes (now), what is more important than having your face rearranged by the blows from the text, is to take care of yourself. There’ll be plenty of fights for your face later if you’re into that sort of thing, and in the mean-time, there are plenty of face-friendly learning adventures to try.

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I like that post. I think I get it; it feels like I do; but I have to reread it a few times again. I just discovered your blog and I see I have a lot of reading to catch up on. . .

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