I read large portions aloud in a version new to me (NLT2), which made certain things pop out and caused me to react emotionally in ways I hadn’t before. I felt awed by the beautiful, poetic repetition in Genesis 1; I choked up at the heart wrenching emotion of Joseph at his reunion with his brothers; I laughed at the irony of Pharaoh’s daughter paying Moses’ own mother to nurse him; I got irritated at Moses when he whined and flat-out contradicted God at the burning bush; I “rooted for the good guys” during the ten plagues and the Red Sea crossing like I was reading an action-adventure novel. I also saw a connection I hadn’t seen before: when Jethro encouraged Moses to set up a system of judges, I thought, “How are they going to know how to decide all these cases?” And right after that, my question was answered by God giving the civil laws at Sinai. Overall, I saw in a new way the “humanness” of these two books and how much they focus on relationships, both among people and between people and God. Even the seemingly tedious details of the tabernacle plans and construction emphasize relationship, for as God says in Ex.29:46, “I am the one who brought them out of the land of Egypt so that I could live among them.”
Recently, several Keynote staff have been posting about the upcoming Comm Labs on Facebook as a way of promoting registration for the conferences. One of my film team students from the last summer project posted this in reply:
“Oh man if this is anything like the comm drills during summer project, then it is so worth registering. Comm drills was one of the best training Ive done in my life. Over the last semester i noticed so much change in myself and how i give presentations, approach others in a social setting, and even how i care for my patients in the hospital. Thanks again Julie, John, Pam, and Denise!”
for full attendance at both spring Comm Labs; right now there are not many registered
that God will use the Comm Lab to help attendees become more confident and skilled in communicating His message
that readers of my blog will be encouraged in their own study of Scripture
I’ve been taking seminary classes by dribs and drabs at Indy’s extension site for Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. One exercise that I found really valuable was an assignment in three of my Old Testament classes. My professor for those classes wanted us to get a sense of the flow of scripture, so he had us read large portions at one sitting and write a short journal entry on our personal reactions to each one. He encouraged us to read the passages aloud, because that’s how the original audiences most often heard them; he also allowed us to listen to audio bibles for the same reason.
This may sound intimidating, but it was actually quite enjoyable. Like most of us, I usually read the Bible in smaller bite-sized pieces that range from a paragraph to a couple of chapters. But in these exercises I looked at scripture from a bird’s eye view, and in the process noticed connections I’d never observed before. I began to see the Bible as one story, with the smaller stories, poems, and discourses all contributing to the whole.
Since my journals were written for public consumption (i.e., my professor), I thought I would share them on my blog. I’ll start with the first of the three classes, Introduction to the Old Testament. Here is a list of the reading assignments/journal entries and when I plan to post them: