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  • Writer's pictureSue Bowles

Brain Fried

I’m a thinker. I’ve been told I like to talk about ‘matters of consequence.’ I love theology. I love counseling. I love coordinating large events. I love all kinds of things – like a chameleon. I have a lot of interests and by God’s grace love doing a lot of things. Sometimes to my own detriment. I’ve had a period in my life where I got burned out in ministry from ‘doing’ and not BEING first. Lesson learned. Vocabulary expanded (‘boundaries’). And sometimes I think about thinking.

I was a Speech major in college. Yes folks…public enemy # 1 (public speaking) is my love. I don’t get freaked out. I actually really enjoy it. I wanted to teach. I’ve done theatre, sung in front of a thousand people, directed dramas….I’ve even written a drama to a song. I like to think. But I think we get our words mixed up. Our definitions confused. Our vocabulary lazy.

Think about it. Have you ever used the word ‘think’ when you really mean ‘believe’?

“Think” can be defined as “1.have a particular opinion, belief, or idea about someone or something; one’s mind toward someone or something; use one’s mind actively to form.”

“Believe” can be defined as 1.accept (something) as true; feel sure of the truth of; 2.hold (something) as an opinion; think or suppose.”

think believe 1

“Think” is softer and seems to be cerebral. It has to do with opinions and things formed in the mind.

“Believe” is more concrete. It has to do with the heart. It has to do with ownership.

“I think I need to say something” is a lot different than “I believe that is wrong and I need to say something.” One is head, the other is heart.

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately. It’s cerebral. It’s heady. For me once it gets out of my head it makes its way to my heart.

I started at a new church. ABSOLUTELY loving it! In the process I had a few email conversations with one of the pastors about some of the beliefs and terminology with which I was not familiar. I was trying to ‘wrap my head around it.’ I was THINKING about it. Processing it.

My eating disorder has been trying to flare the last month. It’s not a ‘crisis’ but there are some red flags to which attention is being given. One step is writing down every time I think about food and what I do as a result (ie: I’m

hungry but I kept working). In just the few days I’ve been doing that I now realize why I told someone “I just don’t want to think about food so much!” Didn’t realize it was such a prominent thought until this week. It’s about raising awareness and changing behavior…so the head can make it to the heart. So it can go from ‘I”m hungry but I kept working” to “I’m hungry and I ate something.”

Seems almost all of life boils down to this head vs heart thing. Usually it’s in that order for me….head knowledge needing to get to the heart. There are some things that are in my heart but need to make it through to my head – past all the ‘intellect’ to change behavior. Like in the case of the eating….my heart knows food is good and God created me to have hunger but my head has warped it all out. “Food is for the stomach and the stomach is for food” is about as plain as God can get (1 Cor 6:13). I believe that in my heart but it hasn’t made it to my head yet….my thinking gets in the way. My heart knows it to be true – God is good, God loves me, God created me this way, God made food a necessity. But my head hasn’t quite caught up yet, and for now I toggle back and forth between the world of my head and the world of my heart. And I think. Too much. I’ve always said “it’s a weird, warped and whacked out world in the mind of an eating disordered person.”

And then there’s the class I just got home from…it’s called The Forum. It’s more of a discussion class with the Executive Pastor as we talk about theology and living the Christian life in this crazy world. My mind is getting expanded like it hasn’t been for a long time, and I am ABSOLUTELY loving it!

Things I have long been taught from one view are being given an additional view through which to think. Quite frankly it’s blowing my mind and my mind is working in the background trying to piece it all together. It’s quite the tapestry being woven. It’s energizing! And my mind is now pre0ccupied with thinking about class tonight that I lost my train of thought for where I wanted to take the rest of this blog post.

So with all this going on….my brain is fried – in a really good kind of way. If you think of what that implies….there’s a lot cooking inside. The heat is turned up, and oil is hot, and the meat is cooking. Lots to process. Lots to weave together. And as crazy as it may be in my mind right now, it’s still so totally cool! I think I need to take some time to think about it. Or do I believe I need time to think? I’m not sure. I think I’ll think about it.

For more thoughts on thinking check out (Jenn) and (Leisa).

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