Last time, on “All Shall Be Well…” I wrote about people who are primarily thinkers (Adam, Noah, Nathanael, Paul, St. Augustine, St. Ignatius, Martin Luther–there are others…) and people who are primarily feelers (Moses, John the Baptist, Mary of Bethany, St. Francis, Julian of Norwich, John/Charles Wesley).
Today, I want to ask the question– Is Jesus a thinker or a feeler?
There are many scriptures that would support Jesus being a feeler:
Luke 13:34-45, where Jesus laments over the city of Jerusalem, and wishes to gather his people together “as a mother hen gathers her chicks under her wings.”
Luke 18:15-17, in which Jesus embraces the presence of children, and encourages his followers to have faith like children.
John 11:32-44, the story of Jesus’ righteous anger as he cleanses the Temple of the money changers and animal sellers.
and, Mark 15:33-34, the words of Jesus on the cross– “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
On the other hand, there is just as much evidence that Jesus is a thinker:
Luke 2:41-49 tells the story of Jesus as a young boy of twelve, getting separated from his parents as he sits in deep conversation with the scribes and teachers in the Temple.
Mark 2:5-9, when he reasons whether it is easier to heal a man of his paralysis or forgive his sins, thus silencing his critics with his wisdom.
John 3:1-8 (Really, all of John 3), in which Jesus has a conversation with Nicodemus about being “born from above” or “born again.”
and, John 8:1-11, the encounter with the woman caught in adultery. In this scene, Jesus uses a keen understanding of the minds of the men around him, and into human nature in general, as he proposes what is practically a riddle– “Let the one who is without sin cast the first stone at her.”
There are many examples of scriptures where Jesus is a feeler, and many scriptures where he is a thinker. There are also many scriptures where he is both thinker and feeler. This “both/and” approach to seeing Jesus is exactly as it should be, as God is rarely, if ever, “either/or.”
God, the Creator of all, is “both/and”–Thinker and Feeler.
And you and I, who are created in God’s image, are also “both/and”–Thinkers and Feelers.
Some of us are more one than the other, but that doesn’t negate the fact that we are still created in God’s image, and have the potential to be “both/and,” if we would allow ourselves to go outside of our comfort zones and accept that we can be something other than what we (or others) have defined us to be.
So, are you a thinker or a feeler? Or are you “both/and”?
If you are a thinker, think about how you might feel your faith more deeply.
If you are a feeler, feel yourself thinking more about your faith.
Either way, you will grow–and grow to be more like the God who creates, redeems, and sustains you.