The Chair and the Desk, 2/8/16

From the chair:

“The woman said to him, ‘I know that Messiah is coming’ (who is called Christ). ‘When he comes, he will proclaim all things to us.’ Jesus said to her, ‘I am he, the one who is speaking to you.'”

-John 4:25-26

No matter what, this is an amazing statement on Jesus’ lips. However, if we just start and stop with this story, we may miss the fact that Jesus is answering a question that’s been simmering since chapter 1.

John confessed, “I am not the Messiah.” (1:20)

Andrew ventured, “We have found the Messiah.” (1:41)

John testified, “I am not the Messiah, but I have been sent ahead of him.” (3:28)

Yet, the first person to hear this declaration is this outcast among outcasts. “I am he, the one speaking to you.”


 

From the desk:

“to be serious and to labor for the sake of play is foolish and excessively childish. But to play so that one may be serious, as Anacharsis has it, seems to be correct. For play resembles relaxation, and because people are incapable of laboring continuously, they need relaxation. Relaxation, then, is not an end: it arises for the sake of activity.”

-Aristotle, Nichomachean Ethics X.7, 1176b33-1177a2, trans. Barnett and Collins

I read this a few weeks ago, and I couldn’t remember where I’d heard it until we reviewed this book in class today. Don’t work to play; play to work. I think there’s some truth to that. Hopefully, it’s a truth that will keep me healthy and happy this semester.


 

“The chair” is the one Annie aptly chose for the corner of our living room, and it’s where I am committed to daily hearing from God’s Word–the Word I above all else hope to speak to others. “The desk” is the one by my coffee grounds and spare charger (if I get to the library early enough); it’s where I have the privilege of reading and thinking all day, where I intend to learn for others’ sake. 

 

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