Even when we do not seek theological understanding, our deepest theological understandings most often follow our feet (39). I believe it is to a generation of theological consumers such as myself whom Skillen writes for—well-meaning Christ followers tapping our feet to an abridged version of scripture that under-amplifies “the greatest commission of all” (53).
When confronted with distress in others, words dry up in our throats. If the words we seek do come out, they sometimes seem awkward or out of place. Thus, the best commentary on the prayer of Psalm 102:1-12 may be the blank page. Silence.
Whenever God comes to the world in childish form, imagination runs wild…stars, donkeys, angels, shepherds, wise men, you name it…everyone and everything is in the elaborate punch line. We all laugh. It would be rude not to. The joke, it seems, is always on us. Thanks be to God.
Clearly Jesus’ intention is not to perform a Vegas-like vaudeville act. Jesus doesn’t do magic. He doesn’t need to. The spit, the sighing, the gestures…they aren’t for an audience.
Once we understand that earthkeeping has more to do with who we are rather than what we do, we are free to develop practices that reveal where our heart is.