Monday, January 25, 2010

finger painting 101

i recently bought my first ever set of watercolors. i've had a desire as of late to paint. don't ask me why, cause i have no visually artistic abilities whatsoever. so far i've only painted once, and while it was quite fun, perhaps i should have started out my painting exploration with finger paints.

art. the Bible is a piece of art. yea, yea, it's also the written word of God. but the Bible is ART.

i have recently been struck by the Bible's literary awesomeness. the poetry, the use of language, the stories, i've been reading the Psalms as of late, mostly because i feel like they just speak to me, that i connect better to their use of imagery and artistry. but then i began to read Lamentations, and Elijah's story, and Esther, and i realized, well, the whole Bible is this fascinating literary work. i love writing. i love reading. i love the thought that goes into each word, each phrase, but more than that i love the bigger picture. and right now, the big picture that the Bible paints is one of such diversity and creativity that it just makes me downright giddy and giggly.

i've been pondering a lot lately about translation and interpretation. something that has been on my heart and mind is how often we nitpick at verses, how we, in our attempts to be "literal" and "unbiased" readers of the Bible, end up reducing it to something so devoid of creativity and passion, of diversity and emotion. it just seems to me downright silly. i could never read the Bible NOT being me, just as you can't read it not being you. and i don't think that's a bad thing. the creative God of the entire Universe couldn't possibly have desired for us to read about Him in the exact same way, right?!?

perhaps some will say my thoughts are heretical, i dunno. but i can't imagine that the way God and His Word reach out to me is the way it must reach others. just as believers have a plethora of testimonies, so we should also have just as many ways to read and see and explore God's Word and His ever-reaching hands in our lives. the early writers certainly thought so too--why else would we otherwise have at least 4(!!!) different accounts of the same story of Jesus' life?!? same God, different people, different ways of reaching them, different accounts of who He is. do you see how beautiful that is?!? that only collectively, through all our different eyes, words and lives, can we see the fullness of God's creativity and awesomeness?!?

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