Guruzilla's /var/log/knowledge-junkie
["the chatter of a missionary sysadmin"]

productivity and background

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{ Now playing: [two geeks on keyboards]
  Recent movie: Godzilla: King of the Monsters*****; Godzilla 1985***; Beijing Bicycle*****; Godzilla vs. Destoroyah*****
  Recent books: Numbers; Ephesians; Sources of Japanese Civilization vol.1; C. S. Lewis, The Great Divorce; Schlatter, The Theology of the Apostles; A Hundred Things Japanese; I John 1:2 (trans.); Thomas Alan Harvey, Acquainted with Grief: Wang Mingdao's Stand for the Persecuted Church in China; H. B. Dehqani-Tafti, Design of my World; Steven Brust and Emma Bull, Freedom & Necessity; John R. E. Bliese, The Greening of Conservative America; Alan Moore and Kevin O'Neill, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (Vol. 1);

A funny observation, though whether it's funny-ha-ha or funny-odd is left as an exercise for the reader: I get less productive and less interesting, the less I read the Bible. Funny ha-ha, because theologically, I should've predicted exactly this result; funny odd, because nobody thinks of the Bible as productive of creativity anymore, not even me, apparently.

Correlated with the lack of reading is a failure to talk beyond the daily grunts and blather of a stale relationship, to God. (Atheists, commence firing...) Praying and reading have some sort of symbiosis, I'd like to say almost a yin/yang-style balance, though the Daoist flavah isn't helpful. So, onward to Deuteronomy! Cutting back on prayer seems, at this point, like dropping all the sails on your boat: fine if you want to drift, but unlikely to get you anywhere in particular.

Compared to the riotous and familial goings-on of the book of Numbers, I have to admit, my little sojourn in the wilderness is small potatoes. But how many days in the desert must have seemed, at the time, just another round of manna and quails, camping and bathing? What did it mean when everything stopped for a little scouting expedition -- with contrary cusses Caleb and Joshua recruited for the trip? Did they know? Suspect? Did they pause to consider fear of the truth, and fear of their comrades? Did it even occur to them to consider that conflict before it arrived, squalling, in their laps?

Forty years. If I arrived in Japan in six weeks, and worked until I was seventy, that would be forty years of labor. Enough time to bury a generation, enough time for redemption. Plenty of time for murmuring, for striking rocks, even while I never lack for shoes or meat, plenty of time to be left standing on the bluff to give my last testimony.

I do not think that I am the kind of man for whom forty years is going to be enough. I think I need the medicine of immortality, as Ignatius would say.

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