Dam the dams. Close your eyes and say that repeat that a few times. Did you listen closely to what you said? Imagine not seeing the text and only hearing it. Were you cursing the dam that stores water? Were you cursing the curse? Or what were you saying?
When you read what’s written, you can see with crystal clarity what the writer said. What it means is another story altogether. But the clarity of what is being said is the beauty of the written word. No one wonders what word the writer used. They can wonder all about its meaning, but definitely not the words used.
And between reading and listening, I know listening is a lot easier and quicker. Regardless, reading is always better. When working, I prefer to get instructions via email rather than a phone call. I do not have to drop everything and focus on the speaker (I’m a typical guy who have trouble multi-tasking). I can choose when to read and consume the information, and I won’t have to worry if I forgot anything. Listening is temporal. You hear it once, and then it’s gone. You can’t hear it again unless you have it recorded. With writing, it lives on, long after the moment it’s first read.
Historians use writing to piece together history. They can’t used something that was said but not recorded. When an oral record is passed down for generations, there is always the issue with people’s memory. “What words did they use?” “Did they really say that?” “How can we trust that it wasn’t altered to suit their agendas?” And the list of problems go on.
It is nice to know the stories I write will last. The stories I produce as a writer will not be here today and gone tomorrow. I cannot imagine the bards of old. The stories they told and songs they sang were once enjoyed but are now lost to time.
I am grateful for the written record for God’s word. We can rest assured of the accuracy of what we now have. We have this confidence because there are so may written ancient records. Scholars have compared them over and over again. And they are confident that we have is an accurate representation of the original script. How amazing is that?
So when I read my Bible, I do not have to second guess what I read. Isn’t that just amazing?