Monday, August 3, 2009

The Trouble With Boxes

There is a book out called, "Men are Like Waffles -- Women Are Like Spaghetti".
Here is a quote from the little blurb you can find on Amazon:

"Bill and Pam Farrel explain why a man is like a waffle (each element of his life is in a separate box), why a woman is life spaghetti (everything in her life touches everything else), and what these differences mean."

I read the book a few years back and remember that the authors said that when men are in one box, they can really only think of the things that pertain to that box. If it is something that doesn't pertain to that box (in their mind), then they more or less have to mentally exit the box they are in and move over to the box that contains what the thing you ask them to think about.

Well, this is what I see going on with certain preachers and their messages on Song of Solomon (SOS). They say, SOS is about marriage and sex and that's all. It can't possibly be about anything else. They CANNOT see outside the box. And just because they can't see outside the box they decide that nothing exists outside that box pertaining to SOS.

The Main Shock Jock (MSJ) preacher, Mark Dricsoll, makes this mistake. It is reported that he said if SOS is allegorical then Jesus does (I can't even mention what he says but it is sexual and highly inappropriate) to him.

What I actually heard on part two of his series was mockery and derision for anyone who thought SOS could be allegorical. He brought up the most ridiculous allegorical applications of SOS in the history of man, held them up to be laughed at, then smacked that argument down as proof positive that all allegorical applications were just as laughable and needing to be squelched.

So, here I am. A person that tried to avoid SOS as I mentioned in my January 25th, 2009 post before I ever hear of Mark Driscoll.

But God was persistent to encourage me to go there. When I gave in and obeyed, then He opened it up to me in ways I never saw before. I knew, before I got into it that many thought of it as an explicit book. And even once into it, my dear husband did reaped some benefit from my meditations.

But then, I'm a woman. I'm not like a waffle, according to the book I mentioned above. I'm like spaghetti. Every part of my life touches every other part of my life. I can think outside the box because I'm not trapped in one.

And this, my friends, may be one of the ways women were created to help men. To see outside their little waffle cubicle thinking. To see the forest that all these trees add up to.

As I mentioned before. It doesn't bother me that people use SOS to teach about sex and marriage. SOS is big enough for both that and an allegorical view. My beef is not really with preachers who preach on the sexual aspects. My beef is with the small-mindedness of some preachers who cannot think outside the box. The all encompassing box that sex can become if you don't spend enough time outside that box. And not only do they remain trapped in their little boxes, they insult, mock, ridicule and otherwise put down all others who aren't sucked up and consumed by the sex box as well.

You older people remember those gizmos they used to sell on TV.
You know. "It slices, it dices, it makes julianne fries."

Well, it is as though the SOS=SEX crowd says SOS can slice, but can't dice and sure as heck can't make julianne fries.

You've heard the saying, "There's more than one way to skin a cat."
Well, the Mark Driscoll SOS=SEX crowd says. "No, there is only one way to skin a cat, the right way, my way, which also happens to be God's way."

You remember the old westerns where the gunslinger comes into town, gets off his horse and trudges toward the other gunslinger, spurs a clinkin' "This town ain't big enough fer the both of us..."

Well the MSJ and his clones says, "SOS ain't big enough for both our views, so I'm gonna verbally shoot yours all to pieces."

This is what Mark Driscoll does when he ridicules any other view but his own.
And that is the trouble with burly, verbal gunslingers hunkered down in little boxes.


Gem said...

On July 27 and 28 James MacDonald taught on SoS. If you sign up you can get a free download (I think)

He seemed more respectful in how he handled the "allegorical" than MSJ but still dismissed it and said its about marital love. What I did like is that he said no way, no how that its about Solomon who -though wise- was immoral about sex. He said its about the beloved and her shepherd lover, and Solomon tried to woo this girl and she remained committed to her only true love.

There's another good article online which analyzes it this way too:

Keep going with the series. Its very good, its so deep.

Gem said...

Oh, and McDonald also said that Solomon was so impressed by this girl's character and commitment to her shepherd lover, that he wrote this poetry about her.

Mara Reid said...

You've mentioned this before Gem and it's something that I should look into and set it up next to my allegorical understanding and see the pros and cons of both and how they measure up to one another.

For now, because my parent's 50th wedding anniversary is coming up and I'm the oldest daughter and the only one who lives nearby, I'm in charge of the celebrations. Then after that I have to get my kids into school this fall.

So for now, I put it on the back burner and decide within myself that it is another possible understanding of SOS.

Far be it for me hide in my allegorical box and say that all that believe things outside my box are wrong.

SOS is a pretty incredible book. It may contain more than what I think and MacDonald thinks put together, plus understanding that neither of us will ever get to in this life. :)

Thanks for the link.
I hope to get to it sometime not in the too distant future.