Categories
the Bible

Does it translate?

“The Bible makes no sense to me.”

I think this is a common experience of all who read the Bible or who have tried and eventually put it down. If this is you, you are in good company.

Remember, the only reason to read the Bible is to know Jesus better. He is as committed to making a connection as you are. More committed. So as you reach for him, he is reaching for you.

Both of you want it to translate.

Pick a translation that reads naturally to you. Don’t struggle with an old one. If a voice in your head (or in your ear) says you should read the King James Version – heaven help us – just don’t. Period. Unless early modern English is your native language. Which it isn’t. So, none of that.

One recent translation you may want to try is called The Message by Eugene Peterson.

You might want to pray briefly and simply before you read. Something like “Jesus, I want to know you more. Help me hear what you have to say.”

Pause your reading when it feels natural. Don’t feel the need to read some prescribed amount every day. (Although there is nothing wrong with that, either.) It will translate better if you don’t feel pushed or rushed.

When you read a passage you don’t understand or that troubles you, that’s okay. Jesus has a lot to teach every one of us.

Hang in there with your thoughts and feelings. Trust that Jesus hears you, right where you are.

Maybe risk a little conversation, formulating what words you can. Listen for a response – thoughts or feelings that are new.

See, you are praying!

Grace and peace to you…

dw

Categories
Scripture

Losing so we can find

Then Jesus went to work on his disciples. “Anyone who intends to come with me has to let me lead. You’re not in the driver’s seat; I am. Don’t run from suffering; embrace it. Follow me and I’ll show you how. Self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way, my way, to finding yourself, your true self. What kind of deal is it to get everything you want but lose yourself? What could you ever trade your soul for?

Peterson, Eugene H.. The Message: The Bible in Contemporary Language . The Navigators. Kindle Edition.
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May my plans defer to his plans,
  my ways to his ways,
  my words to his words,
  my life to his life,
  who is Life itself,
  who is the Word itself,
  who is the Way,
  who has plans for me,
  for you,
  for the world.

Amen.
Categories
Current Events Scripture

The truth we tell

If love is not in the truth we tell,
are we telling the whole truth?

dw

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I read this from the apostle Paul today – he is coaching Timothy on how to be a good pastor.

The whole point of what we’re urging is simply love—love uncontaminated by self-interest and counterfeit faith, a life open to God. Those who fail to keep to this point soon wander off into dead ends of gossip. They set themselves up as experts on religious issues, but haven’t the remotest idea of what they’re holding forth with such imposing eloquence.

Peterson, Eugene H.. The Message: The Bible in Contemporary Language . The Navigators. Kindle Edition.

Grace and peace to you…

dw

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