Revelation 22:17 Have you ever heard God call your name? He speaks more than we hear. We call it "selective perception." We tune out what we don't really want to listen to often. I find myself peering at the words in my Bible sometimes calling the words, pronouncing the syllables, without my mind focused on making meaning. Going through the motions only gets you going with wind up toys. Twist the little gadget around and around, and release, to see it fly, wobble, or dance across the floor. That never gets you far with God. You just end up going in circles.
I like numbers... they are so clean and pure and honest. Math is fair. Social Studies is filled with conflict, civil rights struggles, wars. Reading itself is a struggle for many students. Much of what we read is fiction. And, Science can be a twisty path of theories, all of which have their proponents and opponents. Wishes, lies, and dreams! But, Math, Math is. Math is fair for all. It doesn't matter what color your skin is, two plus two equals four. That's equal rights. There are no wars, conflicts, or battles fought over the greater than less than decision. There are some numbers that are perfect. No Science theory is perfect. No historical fact is perfectly true. All books are written from someone's perspective, or limited imaginings. Numbers translate into any language.
Show me a student who is poor in basic Math, and I will show you a student who has not been taught Math. That is not always the case with children who can not read. But, much of recreational Math is just that, amusement. You go around in circles. Math mazes, Math finds, Number sequences, though enjoyable to follow the logic, the meaning fails. Have you ever had your child come home from school and say, "Guess what Mom, Dad! We added five and four today, and you'll never believe it but five and four make nine!" No, they don't say that, because those are just bare, naked numbers. Bare, naked numbers are meaningless. If you've seen one, you've seen ten and forty-nine. The "point" of Math, it would seem, is to find the answer, so you can plug it into some larger situation and make sense of that situation, by measuring, quantifying, or figuring.
When was the last time you recited your time tables, "just for fun?" That would be about as exciting as alphabetizing your grocery list. So, what's my point? My point would be that so much of what we do is pointless. That's why it's called "a-muse-ment." To muse means to think. Amusement means spending time not thinking. I don't know if they had Math puzzles in Paul's day, in the Bible. But, Paul found a much higher level of things that can be pointless in his life.
Try this quiz. Which of the following did Paul think was pointless?
1. Talking in Tongues
5. Giving to the Poor
6. Dying for a Friend
7. All of the Above
8. None of the Above
The correct answer is ....
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Paul actually said that all of the wonderful deeds above are pointless if they're done for reasons that don't include that four letter word... love. 1 Corinthians 13:1,2,3 If I prophesy in a way that does not stem from love for my brothers and sisters, I have wasted my time. If I have faith enough, and don't love enough, I might as well pull out the Math puzzles. 1 Corinthians 13:1-13
Of course, it's so much easier to fulfill my obligations, than it is to love my brother and sister. Revelation 22:20 There are many voices that fill our ears. Thanks for allowing me to whisper in your ear. But, the one that carries the most weight is eternal.