This post is the introduction to my exercises in empathy series. Links provided at the conclusion of this entry.
You know what I love about a good book?
A good book really pulls you in and makes you a part of it!
I mean, at first read, it's more like opening a box and peeking down into a little scene, observing another life that isn't mine.
But then I get to know the characters. They become alive and real and sometimes my very bestest friends in all the whole wide world. And not only mine but sometimes a great many others' as well.
Take Anne of Green Gables, for instance. She has an amazing number of kindred spirits. Yep, I'm talking about her like we're total IRL bosom friends. Because.
I know the volumes well. I am familiar with her past, present, and future at all times as I get sucked into the stories again and again. I may as well be there now, sipping tea, (or a raspberry cordial imposter,) right alongside her. And I'm going to cringe as she heads pellmell toward another predicament. She never heeds my warnings. But then, that's our Anne.
And those are some good books!
Lately, I have been approaching my reading of the gospels in a similar fashion. Stories I have been told for ages. Familiar red letters filling page after page. Men and women, foolish and wise, stories of a Holy One making history told by his faithful (mostly) followers. And I am there. Right there with them! As sure as a book ever comes alive and sucks me in and convinces me it's a living truth!
No wonder they call it the Good Book!
I have a few posts I want to share where I have conducted exercises in empathy. What it might be like to be there and live alongside these great people; what observances I make and might share with them over some good bread and wine.
It will not, of course, be Dickens brilliant, but it will be an exercise of being part of the tapestry of simultaneous past, present, and future. That which I suppose Jesus felt at all times, being privy as only he can be to the epic of all that was, is and is to come.
It's time for some imagination!
I will link to the exercises in empathy posts here as they go up on the blog.
Honored: A Story of Mary
The Teacher and The Fisherman
The Longest Day
Family Activity: Remember When?
Suspended in Saturday