It was my Systematic Theology class when we were reading a book by James Cone on Liberation Theology (book: A Black Theology of Liberation) that I found myself for the first time having a conversation with a book that I was reading. It inspired and challenged me so much that I moved from just highlighting and underlining passages to writing in the margins. Sometimes it was just a question mark?, but then another passage would elicit an exclamation point! I talked back and to the author as I made my ways through its pages. This was no longer just another textbook, but a dialogue of faith and understanding.
I'm not sure if this is what gave me "permission" or just an entry into writing in the margins of my Bible(s) (never seem to use just one). From this time on, I didn't read passages of scripture just to read them like any other book, but found myself more engaged in them.
There were times when my margin notes were translation reminders or clarifications. Other times, I would highlight a passage so that it would easy to find and go back to time and time again (such as the ones that I have mentioned previously: Psalm 46:10 and I Corinthians 10:13). Within theses pages, I would add those !!!! points and ???? marks as I was inspired and challenged as well.
Recently, one of the web sites that I visit had people share their own thoughts on writing in the margins of their Bibles (here is the link to the site to be able to read some of them: http://revgalblogpals.org/category/wednesday-festival/).
As I reflected on this margin writing experiences, I realized that the notes and highlights that I have made are part of my ongoing conversation and relationship with God. They not only point to where I have been in my faith journey, but continue to encourage and challenge me as I experience the ways in which God speaks through this particular gift of faith.
What is written in the margins of your Bible?
What might you write in the Bibles of others to share your own faith experiences with them?
Take the opportunity to share that here (on the blog, facebook or email responses) with others.