Category Archives: Psychology

Metacognition and Church of Christ Theology: An Introduction

It is important to think about how we think. That is what metacognition is all about. What are the presuppositions that we bring to the table that influence our understanding of the Bible? John Locke believed infants were born tabula rasa (blank slate) but that is certainly not the case when we enter into any kind of communication or attempt to understand another person.

We come with a context. We often think that context is what is in the text or communication itself but we, the reader, speaker, etc also come with our own context. Reading and understanding a text is the intersection of two sets of contexts. While the words on the page may not change the one reading the text can come to the text with an infinite number of possible presuppositions (personal context) that influence how one reads the text and subsequently what they believe the text actually means (interpretation).

I want to take a few posts to unpack the intersection of our own personal context and the scriptures we are reading to help us understand what it is we think we understand. The better we get to know our own thought processes, the more we can come to understand the meaning of the text itself. In the process we come to know ourselves as Socrates once said, “the unexamined life is not worth living” or as was inscribed at the Temple of Apollo at Delphi “know thyself.” If you want to know the text you need to know yourself because all that you come to understand is a process of sifting and filtering information through your own personal context.

I am looking forward to the conversation. I hope you are as well.

Self-differentiation: One of the Greatest Gifts You Can Receive

I wish someone had told me sooner, when I was much younger that the more you depend on others for how you feel the worse you are going to feel. It has taken me the vast majority of my life to figure this out and I am glad I did. The moment I stopped worryingContinue Reading

Intentionality Over Reactivity

Jesus tells us there are two paths through life: the narrow way and the broad way. The broad way has many people on it and it ultimately leads to destruction. The narrow way is one few find and it leads to life. In context Jesus is saying that the way we live our life reallyContinue Reading

Psychotherapy, Preaching and Self-Differentiation in Ministry

There is a term in psychology that every preacher needs to be aware of called “self-differentiation” and it basically means knowing where you stop and everyone else starts…it is the maturity to be able to pull apart what is going on inside of self and what is going on outside yourself. Part of self-differentiation inContinue Reading

James 1: Which Kind of Person Will You Be?

James starts his letter characterizing two types of people (click here to read James 1). The guy experiences trouble and out of that experience develops a mature faith. The second guy James describes doubts God. He is foolish and his life ends up being blown around like the waves, going here and there but neverContinue Reading

Hurt by Chap Clark

Have any of you read “Hurt” by Chap Clark? Our youth minister has highly recommended that I read this book and has laid out the premise of it for me. Then I was speaking with another youth minister who also mentioned this book and how powerful it is in understanding today’s adolescent culture. From whatContinue Reading

Now Offering Statistics Help for Doctoral Candidates and Dissertations

Over the last several months I have started offering help with statistics and research design for people who are working on their dissertation. Often people are severely under-equipped for doing the statistical analysis for their doctorate. Many programs only require a small handful of stats courses and very little by way of research design. NowContinue Reading

Schizophrenia – A Frequently Misused Word

I can’t tell you how many times and from some of the most reputable authors and sources I see the word schizophrenia misused. Over and over I read and hear people use the term schizophrenia or schizophrenic when they mean multiple personality disorder. The most recent comes from Thom Rainer in Simple Church, “When ministryContinue Reading

One of the Best Christian Books on Sex – A Celebration of Sex

In studying for our 20s & 30s class on sex, Missy recommended to me a really good book written from a Christian perspective. It is called A Celebration of Sex: A Guide to Enjoying God’s Gift of Sexual Intimacy written by Dr. Douglas Rosenau. The book is broken down into these sex…I mean six sections:Continue Reading

Religious Systematic Desensitization

Back in General Psych 101 you probably remember the term “Systematic Desensitization.” This is a treatment used for phobias where you take that person and slowly introduce them to their phobia first at a great distance and then closer and closer until they realize they aren’t really afraid of it anymore. You can’t just putContinue Reading

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