Sunday, June 23, 2013

Thoughts from Friday morning’s theology class:

Here I thought that I graduated from Samford on May 18 but somehow I have managed to be in class every day of the week here in Germany! While we are in language school Tuesday-Thursday 8:30am-12:30pm, Monday evenings consist of a World Views class which is for anyone in the church and community to attend.  However perhaps the most impactful time of learning for me is on Friday mornings at 9am-11, where myself and the other two summer interns are able to sit under our pastor as he breaks down Biblical theology for us, filling in the broad timeline from Chaos to Order. From Gen. 1- our Earth being formless, empty, and dark, through the meaning and power of the Word, ultimately leading us to the Life, Light, and Order. The same concept I get of studying music at a University level is so applicable in this study of the Word, “The more I learn, although becoming more skilled, the greater my standard of excellence becomes because I realize how much I have yet to learn and how little I really know.”

LOVE- A Throwback to the Concept of Humility?

OK so each week we are beginning the class with a time of discussion on our private devotion with the Lord, focusing on the fruits of the spirit. (Gal. 5:22-23) For this week we began with Love.  I was brought to tears as we began discussing the concept of “Love” as we understand it. What IS it exactly? How is it tangibly displayed for man to see and feel? Do we really understand what this means? After thinking on this the past day or so I read a passage in Manning’s Ruthless Trust that riveted me:

         It is of immense importance to understand that every word spoken and written about God is delivered in the language of analogy.  In any divine analogy, there is a similarity between the human words and of God himself, there is also a radical dissimilarity.  What is affirmed in one sentence must be denied in the next.  For example, we liken divine love to human love.  The similarity induces us to think that we are getting a grip on God’s love.  And yet, though human love is the best language we have, it is utterly inadequate to express the love of the Infinite.  Not because human love is too sugary and sentimental or because it is too passionate and emotional, but because it can never fully compare with the source whence it came- the passion-emotion love of the Totally Other.
         The more we let go of our concepts and images, which always limit God, the bigger God grows and the closer we approach the mystery of His indefinability.”

         I know this is such a long entry but I was just so convicted of how often I have used my earthly concepts and imagery of tangible love to measure that of my IN-TANGIBLE God.  And although I will be limiting Him yet again an hour from now with my grief and worries, I pray that this becomes ever more real to me- as human relationships and achievements (although sometimes indescribably wonderful) can and will fail at some point. My God is not so small and I praise Him for that!

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