And bring it all to the tableTo the Table, Zach Williams
There’s nothing He ain’t seen before
For all your fear, all your sorrow and your sadness
There’s a Savior and He calls
Bring it all to the table
My first week back to school was a pretty great one I have to say, quite busy, but so good. I was able to meet with many mentors and discuss quite an amazing and impactful summer and for that I am so thankful. In one of my meetings my mentor shared this song with me, To the Table by Zach Williams, and let me tell you. It is a pretty tearful and amazing calling to believers and non-believers. I listened to it for the first time this week and the lyrics and musicality of this song really just hits my heart. Bringing my pain to the table because he calls me to do so. Give it a listen:
I think the beautiful part about music and art is the ability to reorder, or reconstruct the way we think about life. This song is just an example of that power, to reconstruct the impact that taking burdens to the table can be for us as children of God. I think it is a powerful statement of spirituality.
I was also exposed to an incredibly thought provoking podcast by a friend this week and I want to share it. Warning though, it is SO long, but SO worth it.
The podcast dives quite deeply into the importance of looking at your own personal experience in relation to your personal relationship with God, instead of relying wholly on the biblical text for your relationship with God. I really hope that makes sense, but now that I am writing it I am not so sure that it does. lolz. Well, Richard Rohr is a Catholic who has written and spoken on many spiritual topics including the idolatry in the Catholic and Protestant churches (yeah, that sounds quite blasphemous doesn’t it?). Just give him a chance and check out some of his stuff, he is honest about much of his beliefs and I see much wisdom in that honesty.
Anyway, I was impressed by this podcast because it breaks down this discussion of spiritual growth, starting with order, disorder, and reorder. That the order of things begins with biblical studies and structure, followed by the deconstruction and analyzing of the passages, concluded by the reordering of personal development with God as the Father, Jesus as the Son, and the Holy Spirit. This comes with a contemplative look at what Jesus directly says “you have heard it said, but I tell you,” the space between “you have heard it said,” and “but I tell you” is SO vital. Jesus is deconstructing and reordering centuries of personal experience with God. I think that is a beautiful statement of personal spiritual development.
It is challenging though. I mean, if there was no biblical text would I believe in God still?
And the room went quiet.
I think it is perfectly healthy and necessary for us to think about these questions and different ideas of meeting with God.
A couple years ago, when I started ACU as a freshman theatre major I was introduced to new ideas of approaching theatre by the great Adam Hester. One of these ideas was “playing the text.” Now, it seems quite simple enough, this technique and idea, it means to literally say and act what is being said on the page. That if the character says “I would like some coffee.” then I literally say that. I do not put a spin on sarcasm or laughter or anger on that line, unless it is called for.
Many of you reading are probably like “duh, isn’t that what you are supposed to do?” Well, yeah. But among the craziness of what goes on onstage, with blocking, props, lights, sets, costumes, literally everything that would happen in normal life, we can tend to forget to play the text. To go back to the foundations of the story and focus on what is already there.
I feel like this transitions quite easily with the biblical text. To play the text as it is. To study the text as it is and intentions and context surrounding it. To go back to the text to structure and order ourselves, so that we can deconstruct our own spiritual walk with God. To analyze and be a part of God’s crazy amazing Kingdom.
Playing the text to come to the table as I am.
Yeah, some big ideas today. But I am going to play the text and be a builder for the Kingdom of God.