Psalms, Common Sense and The Story

At work yesterday, an older man and I were talking. He had bought some of my product and it was slow, so I figured I’d just enjoy the conversation for awhile. We talked quite a long time! He told me all about his life.

He’s a veteran and a theologian as well, and I told him that I am a seeker myself.

A truth seeker. A faith seeker! I like the way that sounds.

And the coolest thing happened– he gave me two specific Psalms to read! He asked if I say The Lord’s Prayer everyday, and I admitted that I don’t. He gently chided me, like a grandfather would. Today, I’m going to say that prayer.

And when I got home, I opened up my Bible (one that my friend gave me last year)– it’s an NIV version- The Journey: The Study Bible for Spiritual Seekers. My friend Leslie gave it to me. She wrote that I’m her “Sister-in-Christ,” and I love it!

So anyway, I’m reading the Bible she gave me– and I enjoy it even more because this one has special meaning.

And I’m shocked to find that the passages he gave me directly related to and answered my questions from the conversation!

I also decided to tell him about my blog, something I rarely do with strangers. But since it’s mostly about faith and religion, why not? As I wrote it down, he began analyzing my handwriting. And he pointed out that the way I cross my “t” is very strong– I think he identified “the cross” in it– as in Jesus’ cross. If I understood him correctly, he said that was an indicator of my faith. My hearing-aids are broken right now so I didn’t quite get everything.

But I love the idea that even my handwriting somehow testifies my faith. And I think it’s so cool that he knows The Bible well enough that he can just give me specific verses to read– almost like a prescription.

I’m beginning to understand evangelizing. It doesn’t have to be something off-putting.

I always thought of it as so obnoxious– and it certainly can be, many are aggressive and too righteous about it.

But this man did it right! We had a conversation and he just brought up something relevant.

And when I did read those Psalms later, I was dumbfounded by how directly the answered the questions I asked him!!

I’m starting to feel less intimidated by the Bible and more drawn to it. It’s a very complicated text, obviously.

I think that I’m honestly just avoiding it– the intimacy. The Bible is as personal as it gets with your faith. Am I ready to go there? I feel that I’m becoming more confident, more curious.

If I could handle Alexander Pope in college, why shouldn’t I be able to tackle The Word?

I know I can do it!

I told him that I had struck a compromise, by getting a novel form of The Bible. I found it at Barnes & Noble was so excited!

I got the King James Version of “The Story: The Bible as One Continuing Story of God and His People.”

I thought, “Perfect! A novel version will be more palatable. If I can get through this first, then I’ll be ready for the real thing.”

To be honest, it’s a bit boring starting off. There are so many names and it’s hard to keep track of the plot. I feel like I need to be taking notes like in high school, just to keep all this straight!

The Story is broken into chapters. Plus, it’s a long book at 469 pages.

But I can do it. I’m on chapter five right now. It’s got rad words like, “shew,” “subtil,” “wroth,” “wast.”

I’m hooked.

I’m going to say The Lord’s Prayer today, and I’m going to commit to finishing the Bible in novelized form.

I may keep reading my others books, I’m usually reading more than one at a time.

But I’m not giving up on this!


2 comments on “Psalms, Common Sense and The Story

  1. I love that it’s bringing you joy! I agree “evangelism” can have a negative ring at times. I like to think I’m sharing a passionate part of my life, not trying to demand or shame anyone else. The fun thing about the Bible is that it’s a book of books! You don’t have to read front to back! You can skip around, start in the poetry if the law and names bog you down! New Testament gospels are much more narrative and easier. Break the common rules of reading and give yourself a break! 😉 There’s more than enough grace!

    • I like that idea! You’re right, I have been too draconian about this idea of reading it “in order.” I think I might just do that– dabble a bit in places I’m more interested in first. I’m thinking of this like a school assignment!

      And I’m beginning to change my idea of evangelism because I think I’m feeling more compelled to share my own stories. If I think of it as something that can benefit others, then I feel more freedom. I’m realizing how many people have grown up without religion and are just unfamiliar with it, but possibly open to the idea. I’m also learning from some Atheist friends that being an Atheist doesn’t categorically mean you’re closed to the idea of church or discussing God or faith. It’s interesting all around!

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