Friday, April 13, 2007

SSDD? Maybe not.

There's an expression in Christian circles:
There's a big difference between
being a Christian for ten years, and
being a Christian one year and
just doing it ten times.
The implication is there are nine wasted years there somewhere, and we're doomed to repeat lessons until they are learned.

This has fueled my frustration and even depression at repetition in my life. If I'm facing the same lesson over and over, then the only possible reason is I must be thick-headed, hard-hearted, or both.
What if God is making me go through this again
until I finally get it right?
He is patient, and that is good
because I must be slow.
I learned something today that freed me from this notion.

I'm reading Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell. I'd give you the link, but you've probably already read it, or are reading it, or are about to read it.

In analyzing TV shows like Sesame Street and Blues Clues researchers determined: "An adult considers constant repetition boring, because it requires reliving the same experience over and over again." (125)

This made me think about something I learned once, having to do with ancient languages like Greek and Hebrew. Without punctuation, italics, or adjectives, emphasis had to be added in other ways: like repetition. When Jesus says "Truly, truly I say to you..." what He is saying (in our vernacular) is "What I'm saying to you is really true and therefore really important..."

Gladwell continues on page 125 "But to preschoolers, repetition isn't boring, because each time they watch something they are experiencing it in a completely different way.

This made me think of the places in the bible where Jesus exhorts us to be childlike; says, in fact, we cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven unless we become like a little child.

What if God, in allowing repetition in my life,
isn't trying to bore me, or call me stupid?
Might He instead be emphasizing something to me?
And then I thought of something else I've learned somewhere. Refining of metals, like filtration of water, is a multiple-step process. A single pass is not enough to produce purity.
What if God, in allowing repetition in my life,
isn't trying to bore me, or call me stupid?
Might He instead be purifying me?
What if God, in allowing repetition in my life,
is showing me how much He loves me?
~ Keith

ps -- another thing this freed me from was the idea that something was wrong with me if I like to watch the same movie or TV show over and over and over. No one ever told me that, it's just that I know so few people who like to do that -- except little kids. =O)

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Freeing indeed, Keith!

Thanks for another great post!