Just had a weird thought. I have been reading in psalms, which is never one of my favorite reads. I have also been practicing cricket a bit. I know, they have nothing to do with each other. When I was thinking about psalms, and wanting to get back to the gospels (the Jesus biography part of the bible), I started thinking about my bowling practice, and then a realization hit me.
But first some explaining:
I have become a very big fan of cricket. I cannot explain it to my american friends very easily, but it is similiar to baseball in a few ways, but disimiliar in most. A couple of notables for this conversation is the bowler, vs the pitcher. In cricket the bowler, (pitcher in baseball) is allowed to run up to the place where he delivers the ball rather than forced to stand still. He must not bend his elbow while delivering the ball which is a very unnatural way to propell the ball. And you are supposed to bounce the ball off of the pitch before it gets to the batter. Spin bowling, (what I am learning to do), is a slower delivery that has violent spin on it, so when it hits the ground it bounces in angles that make it hard to hit. It isn't easy to do. Shane Warne is the best bowler in the world at the kind of spin bowling I am doing, which is called leg spin. If you need more info, just ask and I'll try to help out
Now to my revelation:
As I was reading the psalms I found myself wanting to read more about Jesus. As someone trying to learn more about leg spin bowling I wanted to read more about Shane Warne. But I also want to read about other leg spinners, and more than either of these I want to read about how to leg spin. I crave instructionals. I am looking for a coach to help me make adjustments. I actually found I don't much care for Shane Warne the person, I just like watching him bowl and want to bowl like him. He isn't the focus, it is what he does that is the focus. Which got me thinking.
What is the focus of my religion? I am called a Christian, a Christ ian, a follower of Jesus. The difference between spin bowling and Christianity is the focus on an individual. Why do we as Christians tend to spend more time reading about how we should live, how we should do church, the bio mechanics of spiritual salvation, the end times etc., than we do reading about Jesus?. Then spending time with Jesus? Then trying to practice being like Jesus? Jesus is the focus. We are called to be disciples of Jesus, called to be followers of Jesus, called to accept, worship and give our lives over to Jesus.
So the instructionals that Paul wrote are very important. The examples of Christ and the spiritual lessons of the old testement are very important. The stories of the disciples, the birth of the church are very important. As are our hope for the future in the prophecies. But all pale in comparison to our pursuit of the person Jesus. I have made a commitment to spend more time in the gospels, and to read everything else with a goal to understanding Jesus. Because the way Jesus lived, and what he did, and what his followers did is important, but not as important as He is.
Thankfully my cricket aspirations do not focus on a person, but on a skill. And I can grow in my skills, without having to get too close to the ultimate skill player. Because I have met Jesus, and I have read about Warne, and let me tell you, Warne is no Jesus. But he does have a nice googly :)