I wrote my name and number on the fly sheet.
Then I downloaded the Kindle edition of the same book so I wouldn't miss it too much, and carefully transferred all my highlights. And experienced again, line by line, the reasons I love this book.
Here's a favorite passage:
Wherever you turn your eyes the world can shine like transfiguration. You don’t have to bring a thing to it except a little willingness to see. Only, who could have the courage to see it?
It makes me think of Latayne's post on Wednesday, and how it took my breath away to imagine the caterpillar liquifying within its chrysalis. Can you bear to think of it? And yet we know the feeling. I can't help but see this obscure bit of knowledge as a post-it note from God, tucked in our pillows for us to find. The rocks cry out. The heavens declare. And so do butterflies.
For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made.
There you have it: scriptural permission to read the oldest book of the Bible between the leaves of the trees, and butterfly wings. "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God... Through him all things were made." The Logos, the animating Word of God, left his mark in the world he made, and we can still find it there.
Wonder is such a pure thing, and it's always been the thing I wanted most to pour into my writing.
And it's never been more needed. In "The Divine Commodity," Skye Jethani writes of a letter he got from his daughter's kindergarten teacher that hints at the way we have replaced the Logos of God with the logos of commercial brands.
Dear Parents, Here is your child’s first kindergarten “homework”! Please help your child find “logos” such as the ones displayed on this page to help reinforce the concept that he/she can already read! They may be on bags, boxes, cups, cans, etc. The children feel great about their ability to read them. We will use them for sharing and also to create a display in our classroom. Thanks for helping!!!
Squirming just a smidge, Jethani and his wife tested their daughter and learned that she could indeed read Pizza Hut, Target, and Disney. Even her water, that stuff Jesus walked on, bore, on the bottom of the glass, another word she knew: IKEA.
Just in case you can't pinpoint the reason this disturbs you (it does, right?), let me suggest that the flashing message of a consumer culture runs counter to the message God so lovingly planted in the pages and leaves and butterfly wings of his Word.
Your television will tell you: Blessed are the strong, the rich, the ones with the most toys.
Disney will show you the catterpiller, the butterfly and even the crysallis - from the outside. But they won't tell you what goes on inside. That's too much like theology. It's too troubling... until you've been liquified, and then it comforts to know that our watery remains are imaginal fluid, the magic stuff that builds our wings.