Beyond interacting with the text, I become more acutely aware of God’s all-encompassing use of language, not only from reading and perceiving scripture, through my intellect and emotion, but in other ways too…
For example, the physical expression of church architecture might be defined as language using a disparate vocabulary. Consider entering a sanctuary setting, which in our case, is a space with a long nave and a central aisle. With me at least, I start to listen in another way. I feel my attention naturally directed toward the area in front – the chancel and alter, where symbols of communion and baptism are prominently displayed. There are also the stained-glass windows, musical instruments, and as a minister, how could I forget the pulpit, each symbolically expressing the word of God in a variety of ways. Even before speaking a word to begin any sermon, I am reminded how God embraces, encourages, shapes, supports, fosters, and forgives – simply, differently, and additionally – by the building we inhabit.
God speaks in ways more comprehensively, and with greater complexity, than words can totally convey.
It is a language which lifts, loves, instructs, inspires, suggests, sanctifies, in a diverse, deeper array.
O Lord, there are many ways to express your word... so to start, where would you have sit or stand, my instrument in hand, with your community orchestra, your multifarious, linguistic band?
Please help me to understand what needs to get done, to follow your leading, to do what is right.
Also, “May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight…”
Rev. Richard Wagner