Thursday, January 27, 2011

Just Relax!

I think we all have times in our lives when we seriously just need to relax... just let things rest in the hands of God and relax.

I don't necessarily claim to know how to do this very well but there have definitely been times in my life when I've needed to relax and, no doubt, there will continue to. I was reminded of this a few weeks ago as I have continued to read through the Psalms in the LXX. I was reading through Psalm 46 that day and ran into the famous phrase from verse 10. Most translations have the phrase, "Be still, and know that I am God."

However, the New English Translation of the Septuagint translated this verse as "Relax, and know that I am God!" Relax!

It's amazing how just a slightly different phrasing can catch your attention, isn't it? Of course, before I wanted to meditate too much on the thought of relaxing in God I wanted to know if this was a trustworthy way of translating this word:

The LXX uses the word, "sxolasate" (scholasate). This word means "to have time or leisure for" or to "be unoccupied, stand empty" (BDAG).

This word is relatively rare in the NT. It is used in 1 Cor. 7:5 as the word "devote" (in most translations) in the phrase "devote yourselves to prayer." In other words, make the time for prayer. It is also used in Mt. 12:44 in the other sense of "emptiness" or "unoccupied."

So, for the most part, I think this word could very well be translated as "relax" based on this word... but what about the original Hebrew? Is sxolasate a fair translation of the original Hebrew word?

Well, apparently the Hebrew word is "raphah" which means "to sink, relax, sink down, let drop..." It sounds like there's probably something to this!

So while we might all still think in terms of "Be still" maybe we can let this idea of relaxing in who God is shape how we view what being still actually looks like.

In what ways do you "relax and know" that He is God?
How well do you do that? Why?

Take a few moments and relax!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Don't Ever Interrupt Me

Some of you have probably already seen the latest offering from the delightfully bizarre and unceasingly creative Julian Smith:

Aaah, so true!

It also reminding me of a quote from Adam S. McHugh's book Introverts in the Church:

"Many introverts do not do well with interruptions, either when we are speaking or reflecting... Introverts may become even more frustrated when people mislabel their internal processing: One of the big mistakes Extraverts make is to assume that if someone is not engaged with another person, that individual is simply not busy. So, it's okay to interrupt someone sitting and reading because that person is probably reading only because there's no one else with whom she can talk. You can only imagine what an Extravert thinks of someone who is sitting there not even reading but merely reflecting. Clearly that person needs to be put to some more useful task -- such as listening to the Extravert's thoughts of the moment."

So, let this be a friendly reminder to all of you: DON'T YOU EVER INTERRUPT ME WHILE I'M READING A BOOK! :)