Week 4: The Drama of Desire

BibleStoryline-CrisisToday our family continues our year-long trek through the big storyline of the Bible, using Brian McLaren’s WE MAKE THE ROAD BY WALKING as a guide for inducting our 3 children into our love for the Hebrew and Christian scriptures. 

This week is chapter 4, The Drama of Desire, so our Wednesday-night after-dinner conversation will dive deep into Genesis 3.1-13; Psalm 32; Philippians 2.3-11.

First, we READ the main text (Genesis 3.1-13) out loud together, each of us taking one paragraph at a time.

Second, we WATCH the videos I’ve prepared:

First, an animation of the story of Eve, the Snake, the Fruit, and Adam:

We all know what it’s like to want something someone else has…

Bart Simpson’s desire for the Bonestorm videogame.

Kids’ (and Smithers’) desire for a Malibu Stacy with a new hat:

Ben Stiller and Jack Black in ENVY: “The little man who didn’t like flan”:

If you’re human, this is a very natural way for you to behave.  Humans have always been this way (The Gods Must Be Crazy):

This tendency is so strong, it’s useful for selling products:

Chris Rock notices that it can have a bad effect on relationships (Warning to those with sensitive ears, Chris unsurprisingly uses the word “bitch” in here):

Psalm 32

Jesus shows us a better way (Philippians 2.3-11):

After the videos, I will talk a bit about mimetic rivalry (without using that term) — how we naturally desire the things other people desire, which makes us into rivals who are competing to get the same thing, and how that kind of rivalry can lead us into all kinds of nastiness.  I will then illustrate this concept by showing my two-year-old a really fun piece of lint I have in my pocket, and refuse to let him play with it.  While he’s screaming, the rest of us will read a few paragraphs out of We Make the Road by Walking 

Then we have a conversation that lasts as long as we feel like.  Some conversation starters:

  1. What’s one idea from this that is interesting or disturbing or happy or confusing to you?
  2. How do you feel when you are better or worse at something than someone else?
  3. Share a story about someone you consider a rival.  How did your relationship with them go?

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