Sometime back, at the encouragement of Emily P. Freeman, I begin to think of myself as a writer. Think. I have yet to say those words out loud to anyone. I don't even like to tell people that I write much less am a writer because, funny thing, when you tell people you write they...expect you to write? And we all know I'm currently experiencing some serious problems in that department.
It looks like my writer's block has also turned into reader's block which is possibly even more upsetting. Writers are readers and now I am neither.
On Sunday nights, I'm in a women's Bible study class at church. The past few months we've done the Ever After study by Vicki Courtney and watched a few of Beth Moore's videos from her "Sound Mind" series. Now we're doing the '90s version of Anne Graham Lotz The Vision of His Glory complete with now discontinued workbooks and VHS tapes. (Age has nothing to do with this, I'm just throwing that out there because VHS tapes, yall! We're having to remember how to work them! Ha!)
Ever After was kinda sugary, sweet, and easy. I liked it, but didn't really feel challenged. Beth Moore is my woman. She gets it and is hilarious. Anne Graham Lotz...I wanted challenging and I got it.
She has a little method you might call it, a 5 step "this is how you read your Bible" plan. You start by reading the passage (duh), you write out the facts of what you read in the passage (easy enough), then you look for a lesson to learn from each fact (getting a little tougher), and (this is where it gets hairy for me) you use the lessons you learned from the facts and figure out how they apply to you before moving on to step 5 and, you know, applying what you learned to your life.
All this is good and fine with this "new" way of reading to comprehend, but did I mention that The Vision of His Glory is about the book of Revelation? Yeah. And have I ever told you (this is the worst part!) that I do not get symbolism???!!
How can you call yourself a writer when you don't get symbolism???? How can you even read??
It's bad, yall.
Even in high school, reading all those books in Lit about dead trees and black birds (1984 really got me) I was like, "I don't have a clue."
They're trees! And birds! Don't get me started on poetry, it makes me cross-eyed.
I have learned some symbolism though and occasionally it is humorous in real life situations, such as my stepbrother's wedding. I can even watch TV and yell out, "Foreshadowing!" at the appropriate moments.
Anne Graham Lotz says there are two extremes: some people stick to the "happy" parts of the Bible like the Psalms (I don't always get those either) and whatnot because they're easy to understand while others get all into the prophecy of Revelation and hung up in the symbolism and counting all the numbers. (I don't think I'm either of these, by the way.)
I believe that you can learn something from every one and every situation so I'm trying to get the symbolism and apply what I'm reading to my own life and not get all freaked out by how much my little mind is boggled, but today's passage (Revelation 4:3b-8a) has really thrown me for a loop. I'm just not with it. I think I might need to take another day and try it all over again tomorrow.
Do you have any experience studying Revelation or care to share anything you've learned? No conspiracy theories, please, I'm confused enough already!