Skip to main content

Day 3, 2nd Take

Weird!  I came back to make a quick post about Phyllis Tickle's book, The Words of Jesus: A Gospel of the Sayings of Our Lord, and noticed that the post I had made a bit earlier tonight never posted!  It has been eaten up by the internet!

I'm taking it as a sign that what I was posting didn't really need to be read. I'll take it as a hint from the fates that it's better not to say such things in this forum.  Now, you're curious aren't you? Ok, so maybe not!

I'm thoroughly enjoying Tickle's writing.  I think this is the first time I've read her.  Last year at the Christianity 21 Conference she stole my heart.  She was witty, sharp, on target, and sweet.  It was a real pleasure to listen to her speak--especially with Sarcastic Lutheran!

I'm not even a third of the way through so I'm not offering a book review--rather I'm encouraging you to pick it up and read it for yourself. 

So here is what I fell in love with yesterday afternoon:
...That in addition to the approaches of the literal and the metaphorical camps there is a third way of knowing the Scriptures.  There is --for want of a better word--actualness.  There is interior to Scripture a holiness that is subject neither to literalness nor to metaphorical translation, but rather is the irreducible, ineluctable cohesian of it.  The holiness of Scripture is its actualness, its unsplitable state; and conversely, the actual existence or pith or vitality of Scripture is its holiness.  That is, by assuming an interior rather than an exterior point of view in considering Scripture, I became persuaded by two things:  the bald-faced truth of it and the impossibility of ever, in time, receiving its full meaning.
Actualness acknowledges that Scripture is not literal and neither is it merely metaphorical--rather it is more than both of those.  It is seeking the heart of Scripture--taking it as it is even when it's something as radical and awful as Jesus saying to love your enemies.    Jesus was constantly saying things that we water down and suggest that he didn't quite mean them the way it sounds and yet some people like Phyllis Tickle, Shane Clairborne, Jim Wallis, and many others would argue that Jesus did say what he meant.  Jesus did mean for us to give up our stuff and follow him.  Yet, it does not mean that God literally crafted and created and breathed life into creation in 7 days, nor 7 days that signify some other strange and magical mathematical formulation that makes sense to some other folks.  It is what it is...God crafted, created, and breathed life into our world in ways in which are deep and rich with meaning beyond what we see and understand at first glance.

Actualness (according to Tickle) is what Jesus was when he healed on the Sabbath to the dismay of the Pharisees.  Jesus says he did not come to destroy the law but to make it come to life more fully--this is what Tickle describes in this book.  It's beautiful.  It's not terribly new int he scheme and histories of Christianity but for those of us in this time and place it can be thought of as cutting edge.

Getting to the heart of it without watering it down--accepting the Scriptures with what they say and going even further, delving more deeply into their meaning so that we can more fully understand.

I'm tired and my thoughts are a bit discombobulated.  Please check out Tickle's book you won't regret it!  (r perhaps you might but that's your problem!  :)

Comments

Mompriest said…
well, now I want to get her book and read it. thanks!

Popular posts from this blog

My Third-trimester Abortion

It's something I don't talk about much.

In the past I referred to it as a stillbirth. It was a stillbirth. But it was also an induced labor in my third trimester, hence making it a third-trimester abortion.

When I discovered I was pregnant I was only 16 years old. I'm pretty sure Christopher was conceived on the night my mom walked in on my boyfriend and I having sex on the couch. I thought she was going to be at work but she came home early. He ran out the door and I cried while my mother yelled profanities at me. It was a horrible night for all of us.

I wasn't smart enough to consider pretending I was on my period. After a few months my mom asked me if I was pregnant. She was right but I denied it just the same. Tim and I had talked about giving the baby up for adoption but we were scared out of our minds and decided I'd get an abortion. Another month or so passed, I hadn't gotten an abortion and I couldn't deny my pregnancy to my mom anymore. I told her …

Cancer blues

Most days I feel really positive and good.  Today is not one of those days. Today is one of those days in which I've been thinking about having my lymph nodes removed and the risk of lymphodema in my legs. Dr. Gyn/Onc seemed more worried about this side effect than the actual cancer.  I don't want to go there but sometimes those images of log tree legs, remembering the pain from the swelling in my legs when I was pregnant, and imagining the drains being stuck in my body for a week or more, well it makes my skin crawl.

I know there will be good days and bad days. I try to keep the bad days from my family and friends. I know they are stressed too.

I feel like we are one of those families in which something is always going on and people start to pull away wondering WTF is wrong with them!

I'm used to being the care taker, not the one receiving care.

I have to find a new normal and that won't happen until after the surgery.  So I need an interim normal for the time being.

Cancer and unicorns

I wish I could remember where I found this prayer, it gives me strength and courage. 

Let me not pray to be sheltered from dangers,
but to be fearless in facing them.

Let me know beg for the stilling of my pain,
but for the heart to conquer it.

Let me not crave in anxious fear to be saved,
but hope for the patience to win my freedom.

Grant me that I may not be a coward,
feeling your mercy in my success alone;
but let me find the grasp of your hand in my failure.

Written by Rabindranath Tagore

It turns out I have actual cancer.  In the tiniest of ways I am concerned but overall I am very positive about kicking some cancer ass. I think it has helped going through the precancerous stuff and emotions. I now know that I can get through the surgery. I know what I face and that I am surrounded by people who love and care for me and will help me through this.

A few months ago I had a "unicorn party" for my staff because things had been rough in the office and most folks had persona…