Wednesday, October 5, 2016

what's love got to do with it?--part 2

The Word for today:
Psalm 119:105-128
When all the dust settles, the legacy of my lifetime will be the words you are reading.
As I look back on my life, all the then-incomprehensible twists and turns now seem a straight path to this very day, this very task. That lifetime of learning and thinking, of living and learning, go into these words every day. If you find them poor, it was not for lack of trying, or crying, or praying. I have brought it all to bear. I left nothing in reserve.
So, as important to me as this this cyber classroom is, you can imagine how carefully I've chosen my substitute teacher.
When, early on, it became impossible to have a blog prepared for Sundays and summer vacation days, I looked around for a person who could keep the torch burning as bright or brighter than I. I looked and looked and then looked some more, but to no avail.
Then one day, when I wasn't even looking...
I happened to be hanging out in Pastor Joe's office, amidst the boxing gloves and the Count Chocula cereal boxes and the Darth Vader masks that seem to find their way there...
when--for whatever reason I'll never know--Pastor Joe picked up his huge old red Bible and pressed it to his chest. And held it there. That's right, he hugged it!--
Out of my mouth flew the same words (but directly opposite in tone) that the prophet Nathan had spoken to King David:
"You're the man!"
And I'd thought I was the only Bible-hugger in town. Wrong again, Franklyn! Like they say about rats, if you see two, there are bound to be twenty.
Psalm 119 is the official creed of Bible Huggers Anonymous:
Oh how I love your law! It is my meditation all the day.
Your commandment makes me wiser than my enemies, for it is ever with me.
I have more understanding than all my teachers. 
(Psalms 119:97-99)
Our interaction with the Bible isn't an academic exercise. I can teach you chapter and verse, but you won't know the Bible until you fall in love:
Cuz all religion ever made of me
Was just a sinner with a stone tied to my feet
It never set me free
It's gotta be
More like falling in love
Than something to believe in
More like losing my heart
Than giving my allegiance  (1)
This is no academic exercise. This is no pledge of allegiance. This is mad, rabid, ardent love. This is love that turns a man into a fool--for Christ. This is love that makes former friends wonder whatever became of Sally since she went off the deep end with that guy Jesus.
(1) Jason Gray, "More Like Falling in Love"

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