Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Dwelling in the Word 1

Our instructions were to follow along until your imagination was captured and you were stopped. I was not used to this…and wondered whether it would happen to me. But, sure enough, it did.

By the time we left Seabeck, my copy of our Luke 10:1-12 passage was filled with notes….If I had known what was coming, I would have written in a different color each day…yet another missed opportunity. So it looks like Tuesdays may be my day for reporting on what I’ve been seeing during my time of dwelling.

I’ll start with some of my thoughts from last week…and we’ll go from there. You are welcome to journey with me…I’ve got seven different versions of the passage on the sidebar…and, as always, your comments are welcome.

  1. First, I was struck that they were to greet no one on the road. Seemed a bit unfriendly, at first, for a passage about hospitality. But it occurred to me that it just might be about focus and avoiding distractions. No wonder I would stop there! I mentioned to one of my new friends that my memoirs, were I to write them, would be titled something like: An Interrupted Life: What I did on the way to where I was going. Hmmm….

  2. Next, I stopped at “cure the sick who are there” and wondered to my partner, Bob, whether we have lost this nuance in our allegiance to modern medicine. He said that I would get along grand with his wife….and he wondered why we had sent his brother, Alan, off to the doctor for antibiotics without first gathering around him to pray. Many agreed…and we did just that later in the day when Alan returned to us. It’s not an either/or thing—prayer or medicine. It is an approach that includes the whole…and I’m not even going to touch the word “wholistic” or “holistic” today!

  3. I also stopped on “eat what is set before you” and all sorts of thoughts of my days in Thailand rushed back—sights and smells intact! I also thought about the theories floating around that suggest that meal times need to be times of peace, lest your body associate emotional pain and anxiety with something that you’re eating—triggering a future “allergic” reaction. Hmmm, again….

  4. Lastly, I was stopped at “Go on your way.” I had almost stopped here the first reading…with the focus on “go”—as in “get going” (which many others commented on), but this time I was stopped on “your”…as in my way may not be the same way as another. They were sent out two by two into every town and place…they didn’t go as a mob. Mob…interesting choice of words….

Today, however, I stopped on lambs being sent into the midst of wolves. It brings me back to the Purple Martyrdom I’ve been pondering. The going out in peace, knowing that you may be verbally chewed up…but not being allowed to carry a stick to beat off the attacking wolves. Many stopped at this phrase in Seabeck…and vulnerability was one of the things that we all realized was a part of this journey we were embarking upon. Jesus is our Shepherd...he will protect us and bind up our wounds along the way.

Interesting exercise, this dwelling on the Word.

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