Facts and Feelings
“What is explained can be denied but what is felt cannot be forgotten.”
Author Charles Bowden was a brilliant observer of the human condition and he understood that simply providing facts and figures about the issues he was passionate about would never be enough to engage people or sway their opinions.
He knew had to make you feel what it was like to flee a cartel bent on your death or to walk across the desert alone.
When the facts were combined with feelings, then real understanding could come and real discussions happen.
Unfortunately, what propagandists from the beginning of time have learned is that if you create the feelings first, then provide “facts” tailored to the feelings, you can accomplish much, both in church and society.
Feelings are damn hard to argue with, anyway.
Feelings without facts are easy to manipulate.
We live in a time when my generations feelings are running high…the world does not look or act as it did for most of our lives and we are very uncomfortable with no real place to express that discomfort.
Lots of people are looking for “facts” to affirm their feelings.
There are those who are looking to form a progressive society and they too make their own “facts”.
The church is split a thousand different ways over theology and polity.
I submit that both in the church and the culture we are drowning in ignorance and manipulation that can only be cured by a single discipline.
Read real books by real scholars on church history and civic history.
Understand the development of the faith and our civilization by reading broadly, but carefully.
Be willing to learn.
Decide to inform your feelings with source documents and the work of learned men.
Have a passion for truth and set a high personal standard for what you will allow in your thought processes.
Rise above the clamor of social media and cable news and invest in the acquisition of real knowledge.
Share what you’ve learned.
It takes time and work, but it may be what saves what we’re all fighting over…
Wise words, and I’m not making light of what you stated, but these verses came to mind after reading your post.
“The words of wise men are like goads, and masters of these collections are like well-driven nails; they are given by one Shepherd. But beyond this, my son, be warned: the writing of many books is endless, and excessive devotion to books is wearying to the body. The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person.”
Ecclesiastes 12:11-13 NASB
Good stuff Michael!
There may be a verse about studying to show yourself approved as well…
Doesnt that quote go on to say, “… a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth?”. What is the ” word of truth? “