Falling Awake

Just Darts Since 2009

Lifetime reading plan 2

The Old Testament

(Entry dated 6/8/00) 

This took up the bulk of my time over the past year.  I would set it down for months at a time, not daring to move on to the other works for fear that I would never return to it.

It is not listed in the The New Lifetime Reading Plan, at least not in the body of the book, but the introdction states: “We asssume that nearly every reader of this book will own a Bible and be at least somewhat accustomed to reading it.”  Also, how can one read St. Augustine’s Confessions, Dante’s Divine Comedy, or Paradise Lost without familiarity with the Good Book?

Brought up a Catholic and having attended Catholic schools, I had no knowledge of the Bible to speak of.  What I was familiar with was Bible stories, and I mistakenly believed that the bulk of the Bible was in that vein.  Now I know better.  The majority of the Bible consists of the various ways God is going to smite me (and thee), and boy, is He ever gonna smite us good.

I read with a highlighter at the ready, to mark any profound and uplifting passages.  Some of the Psalms are nice, and a few verses in Proverbs, but only one passage sticks in my mind: 1 Kings 19:11-12, ending with, “…and after the fire a still small voice.”

 I’ve re-read this passage many time since then, and still am struck as I was on first encountering it by how out of place it seems.  Hundreds and hundreds of pages of how our God can lick their god(s), and Jehovah flattening the enemy (and the Jews too if they got out of line) and then this–an inexplicably modern and to my mind accurate portrayal of God’s presence in my life.

Only a few times in my life do I believe God has spoken to me, and each time it has been with that still small voice.  I should try to pipe down more often.

——————–

By the way, as of this writing my “kickback” from Amazon amounts to $6.66.  No fooling.  If you find that total troubling, I suggest you do something about it.

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3 responses to “Lifetime reading plan 2

  1. INFJ March 10, 2007 at 11:10 am

    I know what you mean about the Old Testament, but how about the New Testament especially John’s Gospel and all the letters of Paul. Paul’s letter to the Galations is
    really freeing from all the rules and regulations of the Old Testament. It’s so much easier to be a Christian, I feel sorry for the Jews. As an ex-Protestant I’ve had the scriptures practically memorized from childhood. As a Catholic I understand the Church’s hesitancy to teach from Paul. You’ll never hear anything beyond greetings and endings from the lectern. One of the main differences between Protestants and Catholics is: Protestants believe that we are saved by faith and not by works, this is their interpretation of Paul’s letter to the Galations. I think the Church is afraid that this idea will give the faithful license to misbehave, but so might St. Augustine’s Instructions to, “Love and do as you like.”

  2. Mike Kriskey March 13, 2007 at 4:54 pm

    I’m not up to the New Testament yet! No skipping ahead!

  3. sandy March 23, 2007 at 6:43 am

    I have thought alot about this post since reading it, going so far as to attempt to read 1 Kings in its entirety. Not so fast.
    I suppose that I need to be satisifed, for now, to have integrated the message that the verse ending contains; it seems to be what is most important, anyway. That still small voice can be awfully hard to hear among the din.
    Thanks again, for offering your insight. You are an amazing guy!

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