Tuesday, October 02, 2012

The Things That Run Through My Mind - The Bookshelf and the Secular/Sacred Question

I'm not a very organized person, but there are times when I get really particular.  One of those times would be with organizing the books on my bookshelf.  I've tried several different methods...
Alphabetical order by author.
Giving each shelf a category, then alphabetizing by title.
Tallest to shortest.
My recent setup is by color... kind of like the way it looks.
I know, it's  a little weird, but this is how my mind works.

The other day I went in to organize my oldest daughter's bookshelf.  It had become a hot mess.  I had tried several different methods to help my almost 5 year old figure out how to have a nice looking cleanly arranged shelf, but my efforts to this point had equaled out to epic failure.  So, I started in again.
My first move was to get all her Bible books and stories to the top left corner and then proceed to Clifford, Curious George, Disney, and then round off the bottom with Dr. Seuss.  But even before I got to Clifford I paused...

These are the things that run through my mind...

What am I teaching my daughter by putting her Bibles and other stories in their own section?  On one hand, I'm letting her know that God's Word is to hold a unique and special spot in our lives.  I mean, I make every once in a while when reading about Cinderella then about Mary, that the story of Cinderella is make believe, but the story of Mary really happened, and her story can truly change our lives.  I want her to love God's word and cherish it in a way different than other writings/texts/books.

But, on the other hand, am I running the risk of pushing a separatist mindset in her that is unhealthy?  By my sacred books and there are secular books, am I encouraging her to view the world through these lenses.  Am I telling her we will have "Jesus parts" to our life, but then have the "other parts."  I can't stand seeing a lifestyle in me or anyone else who turns their spiritual on and off like a faucet or light switch.  God, help me not be a parent who doesn't allow this to happen in my children.

And maybe (probably) in that last thought that ran through my mind, I think I ran into the key.  Maybe it's not about the placement of the books on the bookshelf.  Maybe it's more about the placement of God's Word in our conversations.  Maybe it's more about the placement of Jesus in my everyday life.

Or maybe I need to get a hobby other than organizing books on a bookshelf.  


Geoff Cocanower said...

He's back and the world is a better place. love it.

D.C. Cramer said...

Speaking of books, I think I still have a book of yours called Are Baptists Calvinist? It's not very good. You want it back? If not, I think I know what section I will put it in. . . .