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Almost There

Only one more 6 page paper and two finals to go before semester #1 of this crazy thing called grad school (seminary?) is in the bag.

So what are the results? I know a few more things about the Old Testament (particularly Leviticus), I'm more familiar with the spiritual disciplines of the monastics, I completely suck at Greek, and I have a much more evolved view of how the gospel relates to the postmodern era (Teaching the Gospel with Chris Flanders is GRRRREAT). The serious academic types of the GST would consider my Gospel class as fluffy elective filler, but those three hours a week are where I find my faith both stretched and connected at the same time. (Sorry you Spiritual Formation fans out there, that class just didn't hit home for me.)

What has been the single idea that has stretched me most? Probably that the entire idea of God exists as a story, and cannot be separated from it. Therefore, our knowledge of God only exists inasmuch as we are a part of his story. And how do we reveal God in the world? By telling his story, and inviting people into it. Not by advancing propositions that lead to logical conclusions - people don't even think like that anymore. I am living a powerful story. Can you see it? Come and join me in this narrative that God is telling. Amazing! The second powerful idea is an extension of the first: language is no longer a representation of meaning, language is the meaning. That's why stories don't point us to truth (they don't illustrate truth) - stories are truth. Jesus Christ looked at the disciples and told them stories - almost always without the "meanings." Why? Because the stories themselves held the truth, and Jesus knew it. This is the stuff that keeps me up at night. This is the stuff that I come here to grad school for.

Too bad these gems are like diamonds in the rough when it comes to the grad school experience. Finding the truly transformational nuggets only comes after digging through huge piles of smelly mess. But I suppose that is what God goes through with his world.

On another note - please always remember that God comes through on prayers that are authentically given to him. All you have to do is actually pray. For some reason I'm always newly astounded when I pull myself around and actually lay it out before God, and God takes action. I say this because He has been answering prayers that I have actually been talking with him about lately.


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