Okay, “blog empire” does sound just a tad pretentious. Especially since I have like 100 followers at this point. But it does make a rather lovely sounding title, doesn’t it?
I was looking at this blog last week and the posts looked so few and far between…but I wasn’t taking into account all the “work” writing I do each week. Much of my heart goes there weekly — at least in its expression in writing. I actually maintain four blogs:
A small group ministry blog – whenever something pops up in my reading or my rambling thinking that connects with small group, face-to-face community life, I’ll post it here (maybe two or three times a month at best).
My BookCellar blog – whenever I want to comment upon or review a book I’ve been reading (maybe a post a week on average).
My Wordhavering blog (that would be this one) – a place for my randomness and meandering to find a perch (maybe a post a week on average…maybe…though there are so many random thoughts I fail to catch and commit to paper, which may be a blessing for you, dear reader…and there are others that I’ve edited out because they seem a bit too random and out there at times…I would like to do less self-editing though).
And then there’s the Reflections blog – this one is five days a week; it’s what I write as daily devotions for my church community; reflections on whatever our topic of study might be; it’s a 300-500 word dose of me Monday through Friday for those of you who can stomach that much of me. I do keep my audience in mind as I write these reflections i.e. I try to make sure it’s meandering with a purpose that will actually help people reflect on Scripture. Typically there’s a section of Scripture, then my comments, then a thought/discussion question, then a prayer to ponder as desired. It’s always a bit of a romp for me.
Over the summer we’re digging into an Old Testament study that’s taking on the first eleven chapters of Genesis. Major. Romping. I can’t imagine why I thought it would be dull or tedious. The genealogies alone are to die for! But I’m actually having tremendous fun with Genesis, typically spending all day Thursday writing five days worth of reflections for an upcoming week.
So try it out, if you like.
I enjoyed rereading today’s piece on that blog. So often when rereading these (especially since I wrote these bits a month ago) I get the sensation of, “I wrote that? Oh, that’s actually pretty good.”
Yes, my empire.
Enjoy. Or not. This piece is a reflection from 2 Peter 1:16-21 and the idea of the Bible being “cleverly devised myths”…
“Cleverly devised myths.” Now we’re talking Old Testament in the estimation of many. Just drop the word “clever.” Many in our generation would retain “devised” and “myth” but instead of “clever” would substitute “backwards,” “banal,” or “unsophisticated.” I recently heard it expressed this way: “Sure, old books collected by a bunch of illiterate goat herders is meant to shape our destinies.” Such a view would see the Old Testament as not only irrelevant but as actually malevolent and harmful. And certainly the Old Testament has been used to justify quite the list of man’s inhumanity to man – everything from genocide, to gender oppression, to slavery. Of course, abuse says much more about the abuser than the abused. We seem possessed of an endlessly creative capacity to take the best of gifts given and twist them into curses. Peter points our gaze higher. And while he would likely have no issue with “myth” as a primal story with great shaping and formative power, he clearly takes issue with “myth” as contrived fiction meant to control. He also would undoubtedly take issue with descriptors like “backwards,” “banal,” and “unsophisticated” – okay, he might actually not object to that one. I can see him picking up the word “unsophisticated” and running with it; after all, he insists that these are not “cleverly devised myths.” We tend to see the Old Testament as a dark place, and I suppose we’re right in that for a good chunk of it. But Peter looks at the whole of it and sees not a dark place, but a light shining in a dark place. A light shining just brightly enough, though it often seems to flicker, to dispel the darkness of the room until the Sun rises with healing in its wings. Maybe that’s why we find such graphic honesty in the Old Testament about the darkness in and around this story. The darkness only serves to draw our attention to the light shining in the midst of it all, the same light shining in the midst of our darkness – the light pointing to the full day.