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Old 04-08-2005   #1
Evergreen, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1991
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 316
thoughts on Psalm 42:7

So the last thing I want to do offend anyone. So if you are not into the Bible then please feel free to move on with my apologies.

Here is the verse: Psalm 42:7 (NIV)

7 Deep calls to deep

in the roar of your waterfalls;

all your waves and breakers

have swept over me.

It is a passage I have read often but have always struggled with the "deep calls to deep" part.

So here is a thought based on an experience I had few years ago.

Up until 1997 I lived in South Carolina. In 1995 a hurricane blew up the coast and left a ton of water in the mountains. Some of my buddies were amazing boaters and invited me for their quest for water. The quest brought us to what I feel is one of the jewels of South Eastern whitewater, the Linville Gorge . It was running at about 3 feet which meant we could easily do it in a day. A Couple of years before it was still considered a two day run as it is a 16 mile run with about 12 miles of class five.

Midway through the day one of the guys in our group dropped his boat. I was about 20 yards down stream as I saw it wash by. I ran to the bottom of rapid and hopped in my boat to chase after his boat.(wayyy stupid). I went off of a blind drop that I estimate was at least 8 feet tall. I did not carry much speed into it and did not get a good boof so when I resurfaced I had not made it past the boil line. It pulled me backwards into the green water which began my rodeo run. At first the phenomenon of back-endering end then being up right was kind of cool but it got old when I found that I had no control over it.

Needless to say I popped my skirt. It immediately pushed my under the surface. I came back up a few feet later, got a good breath of air, and was then pulled back into the green water. It forced me down again then allowed me back up. On my next recirc I remembered reading in a Nealy book that sometimes the best way out of a hole is through the bottom. So when I came back up a gain I got a good breath of air and prepared to swim down. As it pushed me down I swam even deeper and then out. When I resurfaced I was past the boil line. I ended up in a spinning cauldron with my boat and paddle, seconds later a buddy joined me in the cauldron with his boat and paddle as well. Both of us swirled around with our gear until our team had finally found us and threw us a rope.

So here is my thought on the Bible passage. All of us have hard times at one point or another. My tendency is to let rationale be my guide and ignore the emotional side of things. I do this because either I donÂ’t have the energy or more often the courage that it takes to handle the emotional sides of a conflict. But then my heart calls for me to go deep. Going deep may simply look like just taking the time to contemplate the challenge and how it may be effecting you. Or it may involve prayer, talking with a friend, or even paying a counselor. It takes energy and courage to go deep but it may be the only way out. The alternatives are too do the following; numb, ignore, or fight, all of them lead to revisiting the issue over and over again in an unsafe and unhealthy matter.

Kind David (the author) was obviously not a boater and probably had little skills in water reading. Maybe he swam out to a waterfall or even jumped off of one and in the process discovered how deep they can be but I kind of doubt it. Regardless I do find my heart calling me to go deeper from time to time. When I do it is nearly always the best thing I could have done.

Once again I hope I have not offended anyone by this.

Grace and Peace,

Ben Rodda

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Old 04-09-2005   #2
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 89
Interesting story about being recirculated and thanks for being polite.

But, frankly, yes, I am bothered by the religious part. I am just mystified that people take the bible as total truth. I feel threatened when the bible and its specifics are thrown into public debate.

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Old 04-09-2005   #3
The next zone, .
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 1,200
Shit - I thought that "the bible" was Colorado Rivers and Creeks. I know I have read that sucker about 10 times and I can't find this passage.
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Old 04-09-2005   #4
Evergreen, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1991
Join Date: Mar 2004
Posts: 316

Yeah I read that one a lot too!

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Old 04-09-2005   #5
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Any evengalistic christian who has ever hung out with a group of boaters probably thinks we are are all lost. I'm in the school of thought that all roads lead to the same destination. I personally find that I feel the most spirtual when on the river, it is my church. I don't feel the need to read the bible as I think it has been skewed to reflect underlying agendas sense the beginning. I think if we try to live a good life( the 10 commandments are a good place to start) we will be alright.
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Old 04-09-2005   #6
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Snowmass, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1983
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 429
Ben, it sounds as though you have a realistic perspective on the bible. You seem to realize that it was written in metaphor and at a time where life was much different than it is now, as opposed to taking it literally as gospel.

I feel that book was written with the intention of it meaning exactly what the reader needs it to mean. The reader hears what he/she needs to hear at that point in their life. When you read that passage ten years from now, it may have a totally different meaning to you. I do not think that any passage has an absolute interpretation. From my experience, this has been true of all the religious/sacred texts that I have read.

Stiff, I agree that taking the bible as "total truth" is mystifying, but keep in mind that the people who do take it as gospel find it odd that we do not. Also, realize that the people who try to witness do so with the best of intentions, despite how annoying their tactics may be.
"A witty saying proves nothing."
- Voltaire (1694-1778)
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Old 04-10-2005   #7
pnw, Washington
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 3,404
EarthNRG, I disagree.
"Also, realize that the people who try to witness do so with the best of intentions"
I dont believe that just because someone is "witnessing" that they have the best of intentions. People witness for many reasons and thats fine but to assume they have the best of intentions in mind is naive.
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Old 04-10-2005   #8
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 89
earthNRG, I generally agree with the best of intentions, but I also agree with gh that this can easily get out of control or be misused.

Case in point: all these recent constitutional amendments in various states that outlaw domestic partnerships.
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Old 04-10-2005   #9
Join Date: Dec 2004
Posts: 3
Psalm Verse

The language chosen in the poem, clearly, meant something to the author. The translation to old English of the King James version meant something else to the translator, and the latest translation meant something different to the latest translator.

I'd recommend asking a biblical scholar what the original text and its context would have meant to the original audience.
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Old 04-10-2005   #10
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Englewood, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1978
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 882
Ben, I would roll with the commentary idea - it's a great place to get some rudimentary info on stuff in the Bible. The more commentaries you get, the sharper picture you will probably get - like newspapers, the more variety you read, the less chance of being misinformed by a writer/commentator's personal views where they might not jive with the reality of the matter. An intralineal Hebrew-English Old Testament would also help in that, giving some insight into the language - Hebrew has a lot deeper meanings than English. Ex: How many words for love in...English=1, Greek=3, Hebrew=20 or something like that. The words have subtle nuances often missed in translation. Good luck.

Stiff, think I gather where you're coming from -- Christians (in my opinion) have an unfortunate but often deserved bad name in this country - and this is especially true among boaters. But Ben isn't preaching hellfire and brimstone trying to scare people through the church doors, nor is he advocating any sort of political agenda. He is reflecting on something meaningful to him, sharing it with us, and asking for the thoughts of other boaters. I think that is a great intergration of faith in the public square.

Join up, suckas.

"People demand freedom of speech to make up for the freedom of thought which they avoid."
- Soren Kierkegaard
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