Wednesday, September 17, 2003

Who's Reading Who?

Another thought on my read-through-Matthew observations:

The point of the exercise was to get inside Matthew's head and discern what the Spirit was motivating him to write, and what that might say to us.

I read it (the first time, anyway) and what stuck out -- while valid -- was partly from my own grid (agenda?) of leadership models. So in a sense, I was reading Matthew through agenda-coloured glasses, not letting the Holy Spirit "read" me through the Gospel according to St. Matthew.

Although even recognizing that I did it, is something that I think the Spirit is showing me -- I'm looking forward to the successive reads (we're only allowed one read per week) to see how less of me is in the mix and more of what the Spirit is trying to say to me comes clearer.

Another comment on the "essence of legalism"...

A prophetic type prayed over me once, about eight years or so ago, that "you've never liked 'religiosity', and the Lord say that in the future, you'll dislike it even more". At the time, I thought that if I disliked legalism and religiosity any more, I'd become homicidal.

But in the years since, I've discovered he was right. When I was younger, I despised legalism & control (which are really the same thing) because I was fed up with people trying to manipulate me with it, but now I hate it even more because I am fed up with seeing what it is doing to others.

NOW the test is to find a loving way to respond to it, so that I don't become just like the thing I'm against! As U2 sang, "You become the monster, so the monster doesn't get you." Gotta learn more about "sowing in the opposite spirit"!

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