The Jazz Theologian

I’m a compartmentalizer. 


I know I’m not unique when it comes to this inadequate way of being. It shows up in so many ways.  Why do I hide my weaknesses?  Why do I have to think things through in one setting before I share them in another?  Why do I have two blogs?

Who am I?  My answer depends on the time of day, where I am, what I am thinking, what I am unwilling to admit that I think.  Why am I not willing to tell strangers that I am a pastor?  Sometimes when I meet people, I so much want to be someone else.  I’m a writer, a teacher, a father, husband…  Why can’t I be wholly me?

Who am I?  It’s such a difficult question and yet it shouldn’t be.  I’m grateful for a conversation that I had with a friend yesterday about authenticity and doing life deeply with people. 

Isn’t that why we love Bonhoeffer’s poem "Who am I?"   Isn’t that why we resonate with Romans 7 & 8?  Because we desire to admit the paradoxes of what we say we believe and what we do–what we are thinking now verses an hour ago–the tensions that we are.  What would it look like to truly claim who we are fully?

That’s why I love about Coltrane–he was a "combiner."  His struggle with drugs and his desire for the transcendant were one and the same and he brought them together in a third place–his music. (is that compartmentalization too?)

I want to be a "combiner."  Maybe I should combine my other blog with this one…

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