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4.20.2006 

an easter narrative and the meaning of life

Ami's out celebrating a friend's birthday over ice cream and I'm home with little boy sitting on the deck and enjoying the night air (the boy's in the bed). I should be reading 2 Kings.

Baseball's a couple of weeks into its season and so far hasn't been without drama or surprise. The Cardinals game on Sunday against the Reds was an instant classic--a great story of one player who just wouldn't let his team lose despite their best efforts to the contrary. I watched Juan-got-no-glove-or-bat err the game away with frustration, but of course he was just setting the stage for baseball's best hitting pitcher to get on base with a single up the middle so that baseball's best hitter could take one swing, throw his hands in the air, flip his bat and stutter step to first, watching his third homerun of the day curve just a few feet right of the left field foul pole and send everyone home happy. New life right out of the death of a ballgame, and on Easter no less. How 'bout that?

Studies continue to well and keep me busy, not that I'm complaining. There's something about constant hard work interrupted by one day of rest every seven days that's helpful and right.

My thesis paper is developing--there's four weeks to go and twelve pages are done, most of them not half bad.

Just finished a group exegetical paper on 2 Sam 11 (David and Bathsheba and Uriah the Hittite) which is fascinating passage when you look at it closely, especially in the Hebrew. I'm sure I've spent 40+ hours on that chapter in the past week and I still get the feeling the surface is only being scratched. From a strictly literary point of view, I'm more and more convinced that the Hebrew Scriptures can go toe to toe with the best of Homer and Virgil and come out on top every time. Books by two Jewish scholars, Robert Alter and Meir Sternberg, have helped a me great deal and I recommend them highly ("Art of Bibical Narrative" and "Poetics of Biblical Narrative"). Alter's is more accessible.

Another pleasure: Garrison Keillor's "The Writer's Alamanac" is now available as a daily podcast through itunes, which means I can listen to Garrison tell stories and read a poem every day on the way to school. That's a pretty good way to start the day, even if it is in the middle of the daily knucklehead St. Louis traffic jam.

The other day in my intro to counseling class our professor asked something like "how would you explain the meaning of life"? I couldn't think of a good summary at the time, but I was a little frustrated with the answers of my classmates, which were mostly of the "love God a lot" variety. I think I have an answer now: To enjoy God's good creation as much as possible all the days of my life and join with him in working for the renewal of all things, believing that all the best of what there is in this world is only a shadow of its reality in the new earth that is to come.

Aren't you gonna blog about my birthday?? It's only the best day of the year.

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