Three R’s: Resolute, Resilient, Relentless

Conversion of St Paul on the Road to Damascus

Conversion of St Paul on the Road to Damascus (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Paul never wrote about his time in Arabia.

Between the time of his conversion on the Road to Damascus and his time with Ananias in Straight Street, and his appearance in Antioch with Barnabas, it is thought that Paul went to Arabia where he lived by his trade and studied and thought about all he knew about Jesus from the Gamalielite tradition of his Pharisaic learning: but he never wrote anything about it, and we have no record of his even preaching about it.

Perhaps that is what set the struggles of Paul against the struggles of others in life: Paul grew through his struggle where others constantly looked back on theirs and lived from the struggle. Or in the struggle, never actually leaving the place of struggle. Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf perhaps is the prime example of this: one man’s “my struggle” lead to the death of tens of millions and the ruin of the lives of a billion more.

Joseph was a slave the entire time he lived in Egypt. For all his becoming prime minister and second only to Pharaoh we are never convincingly informed that he was released from his status as slave. Perhaps Potiphar had no further claim over him following his imprisonment; but was he actually emancipated, or did he just serve at a higher level of submission?

So, this is my account of the Middle Eastern desert: my time in Egypt and Arabia, (but not Munich). I write this as a record for my own keeping, so as not to forget the lessons I learned in preparation but to consolidate them into what comes next. I believe it may well be an ongoing record, perhaps looking backwards to begin with; but only in the sense of dropping down a few gears so as to get up the mountain with constant velocity.

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