A Well-Functioning Life

In July 2018, I spent time pondering works like Team of Rivals, Calvin's Institutes, and articles collected from the Internet. Gathering thoughts daily and weekly and summarizing them for the month, the theme of a well-functioning life rose to the top. 

This is my first run at this kind of pondering, and the following paragraphs form a musing flowing from that process. Like all musings, this topic is under construction.

A God-aligned, well-functioning life is maintained using continual tweaks in response to personal, communal, and divine feedback loops that connect life to God's perspective. The alignment of purpose, process, and telos into unity and the alignment of that unity with reality form one critical component of a well-functioning life. Such alignment requires continual tweaking, for things are always changing and sin's corruption is always pressing.

Feedback loops. Three types of feedback loops inform the tweaking. Personal feedback loops, grounded in practiced self-awareness, link action, thought, and emotion to knowledge of God and his ways. Communal feedback loops, grounded in the inherent connections among members of the body of Christ, make available insights from a range of perspectives. Divine feedback loops, grounded in our connection to the indwelling Holy Spirit, embed the Spirit's impressions and convictions within individuals and community. Feedback-informed adjustments tend toward a life of honesty and openness, informed by experience-shaped biblical theology and encouraging design-aligned, freedom-situated influence on the world.

Honesty and openness. Honesty about who, how, and where we are, along with openness to wise others, supports proper openness to Spirit and Scripture. A believer's identity is always grounded and secure in Christ and his Word, but living out that identity at any one moment is a mix of faithfulness and wandering. Distinguishing our in-Christ-ness from our in-world-ness is a starting place. Opening and reopening ourselves to wise others makes us aware of insights we would have missed and exposes incorrect or inadequate assumptions.

Experience-shaped biblical theology. Being who and where we are, while deciding not to remain there, is one part of experience-shaped biblical theology. Wishing for another context where things are "better" is futile and harmful. A journey must always start at one's current location. Thinking otherwise is foolish, and refusing to journey is stagnation. Experience-shaped biblical theology is theology with flesh on, resulting from a combination of theological knowledge, biblical values, and Spirit-led obedience to Christ.

Freedom-situated, design-aligned influence. Freedom-situated, design-aligned influence on the world depends upon the iterative and intentional alignment of life with God's rule. This side of heaven, alignment needs to be revisited regularly, for drift happens. Alignment must be intentional. The journey is a process of continual realignment, deciding not to remain stuck while paying attention to the three feedback loops. This is the birthplace of influence, emerging from a place of freedom, playing off the firm foundation of God's rule, and flowing from lives that are aligned with God's design.


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(C) Laura Springer
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Musings of a peripatetic wannabe-sage by Laura Springer is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License..

Knowing truth


Knowing truth requires iterative exposure to the big questions and to the other that pushes back and questions one's structure of knowledge and assumptions.

Thought Fodder



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Musings of a peripatetic wannabe-sage by Laura Springer is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License..

Wisdom and holism



Wisdom and holism function at the nexus of Scripture, intellect, and affections, drawn forward by the telos, which is Christ.

Thought Fodder

  • Integration: Integration is always teleological
  • Wisdom development: thinking about background processing and abstraction as tools in creating knowledge-to-wisdom. In my case, background processing includes translating ideas from one day into pictures the next day, then translating the pictures back into text on the third day. Abstraction is included in the background processing (text-to-pictures-to-text), but also includes diagramming ideas from posts on TFB Academy, and using the diagrams as a foundation for mini-lectures at Theology Brunch.
  • Structure: thinking about how processes function as structures for moving data to information to knowledge and to wisdom.


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Musings of a peripatetic wannabe-sage by Laura Springer is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License..