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Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Words and The Word

If you continue to believe as you have always believed, you will continue to act as you have always acted. If you continue to act as you have always acted, you will continue to get what your have always gotten. If you want different results in your life, all you have to do is change your mind.” (—Anonymous, quoted in Power Thoughts Devotional, Joyce Meyer, page 344).

Sometimes it is downright awesome to think that the configuration of the world as we experience it is fundamentally determined by the words we use to describe it. Herein lies a power seduction for verbal man. This, of course, is not to say that I can without dire consequences call boiling water lukewarm and put my hand in it without consequences. There is an outside world that can call us to task if we are too far out of synch with it. Nevertheless, overwhelmingly in a vast array of matters that confront us, the words we use to process phenomena are decisively important in our perception of the world and our interaction with it. It reminds us that all creation was in the beginning the thought of God made concrete in the Word of God—the words of thought and the realization of fact were one—but this transcendent power is exclusive unto God alone.

This is Advent season, a time to remember John 1:14 (NLT): “So the Word became human and made his home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen his glory, the glory of the Father's one and only Son.” We are reminded that words can be true—in line with the Word—or false—in line with Deception. The great mystery that confronts is why anyone would perceive falsehood rather than truth—why the survival instinct would drink from the cup of destruction rather than from the cup of life. This perversity of perception may one day be understood in terms of organic processes, and the hope is that the suffering caused from it may be alleviated with application of the minute precision of physics. Surely religion and great literature—which derive much of their livelihood from the dysfunctions of man—will meet such a development with opposition and much ambivalence. Man has come to be fixedly identified with perceptual tragedy—we lust for it—and we feel that much would be lost without it. We are not sure that there would be positive gain if Ozzie and Harriet should supplant Hamlet. We thereby can get some intimation of the extent of our perversity and the mighty lure of descriptive power.

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