(January 15, 2015)
There were a pair of thoughts that I had reading through this chapter today. The first was a return to the idea of circumcision. The more I think about that ordinance, the more I realize what a perfect symbol it is for each of us in putting the Lord first in our lives. There is a huge biological imperative for reproduction – some argue that the urge to reproduce is more important than the urge to survive – and the ordinance of circumcision was the process of sacrificing a portion of our participation in that process to the Lord. It was, in effect, putting the Lord first before our sex drives. It doesn’t mean that we cannot reproduce, or enjoy the blessings of life (expanding the symbolism outside reproduction alone, which I think is appropriate), just that we must put the Lord before ourselves.
The second thought that I had was the imagery of running towards the walls. There are walls built around each of us. They are not built to keep us in, but to protect us and keep the adversary out. We can, at any time, abandon these walls and go where we choose to go. But we are only safe within the walls. Sometimes it seems in my own life I will almost play a game – I will leave the walls and venture just as far outside of them as I feel safe doing. I will tiptoe outside, seeing the wolves, but trying to stay close enough that I can run back to safety when the charge. This, of course, is foolish on my part. Rather than considering the walls that keep us safe a burden, we should view those walls as the protection they were meant to provide.