I was tipped off to this lovely phrase, “the conversion of the imagination,” in Scot McKnight’s excellent book, The King Jesus Gospel, whilst on a run this morning. It is amazing how you process a book differently on multiple read-throughs, this being my 3rd time through Scot’s book. This time, the phrase assaulted me like a shot across the bow.
After returning home from my run, I stopped my audiobook, and promptly found the reference in the book. Lo and behold, it is a quote from the always-enlightening Richard Hays, and now his book is tops on my to-read list: The Conversion of the Imagination.
The phrase flows fluidly in Scot’s argument and I was again encouraged and reminded of the gospel’s creative, aesthetic, and imaginative power.
A Concluding Thought: Top 10 Book Lists
My lovely bride was intimidated by the recent trend of Top 10 Book Lists going around Facebook, because her favs didn’t include N.T. Wright, Francis Chan, or John Piper. She loves a good story and her favorites are filled with gems like The Chronicles of Narnia, Harry Potter, and (gasp!) various works of Stephanie Meyer… the (amazing) list goes on. But she should not be ashamed. Here’s why…
Roughly 75% of the Bible is narrative. We humans speak through story: whether the story of a friend, a powerful movie, or good ‘ole fashioned books. Didactic arguments, letters, and treatises have their place; indeed, this post commends highly 2 of these kinds of work. However…
Our imaginations are in need of more and more “conversion” today, and I’m convinced that reading more stories, both intra- and extra- canonical stories, is the way to go.
There’ll be more (and better) thoughts from Hays on this topic in the near future.
What imagine you, dear reader?