Monday, October 02, 2006

footstool

Riding in the back of my parents' van yesterday evening gave me the rare opportunity to lose myself in the sky as we drove. I used to love doing just this, but these days I am always the driver.

The sky is a magnificent thing, regardless of the weather. Pondering that fantastic dome, the atmosphere, the color, watching the wind move the clouds..... something about it. On the one hand it looks like it could be the logical outcome of millions of years of scientifically explainable occurences, but then on the other hand, it looks like a vast and mystical environment created by a vast and mystical god. Sometimes when I look at the sky, I feel the way a goldfish must feel staring bug-eyed out of its bowl. Goldfish, like humans, are always trying to get out.

There was one cloud in particular, that looked like a giant boot. An enormous steel toed workboot. I imagined that God was indeed an enormous old man up in heaven, and he was walking across the sky, and then I thought about that verse in the bible that calls earth "His footstool." If earth is merely a footstool, then what must heaven be like? Heaven is a throne, supposedly, and I will find out in the event that I'm lucky enough to make the cut.

Sometimes I wonder, and this was one of those times, if I'm completely wrong about everything. What if God is exactly what I was taught in sunday school, and there really is a place called hell, and if I don't submit to the nicene creed I am going to go there forever? What if that's true? My common sense tells me it can't be, my logic tells me it's ridiculous. My brain says that the Christians are missing the point, and my heart seems to agree. But lets face it, I'm dealing with 25 years of solid indoctrination, and if it's possible for anyone to be wrong, then it's also possible for me to be wrong.

That's when I prayed. I'm doing the best I can, I said. I'm really trying to find you. I am using every faculty at my disposal, faculties which you provided, I might add? Are you really my Father, and do you really speak english? And do you really love me, but not so much that you would keep me for eternity despite my confusion about matters theological? Is the bible really your words? Because the bible says that if I seek with all my heart, I will find you. And here I am, trying my darndest to find you, but it seems that the harder I look, the cloudier the water seems to be.

God was silent. At least, He didn't speak any english. In my heart I felt peace. I felt that the clouds were beautiful and the sky mystical and that they were just as they should be, and the big boot melted away and the sun went down and then it was night, and night is the best time because that is when you can see the stars.

I guess it all boils down to intuition, and listening to your heart. And I think I need to stop comparing my current thoughts with my upbringing. After all, I will never feel that way again. the mind once stretched can never return to it's previous proportions, or something like that. If you know who originally said that, please tell me, because it's one of my favorites and i can't remember where it came from. But it's so true. I can't forget all that I've learned, and I can't reverse the process that has gone on inside me. So for me, all of my fundamental upbringing and theological learning is in the past. I can't go back there, at least not with any conviction. Perhaps this is the unforgiveable sin of christianity, the point of no return.

But my heart does not indicate danger, and I'm not sad or frightened. When I pray, I pray with all sincerity, and when I seek, I seek with all my heart. Surely that piece of God inside me will somehow lead me to truth.

right?

4 Comments:

Blogger BruceD said...

I'm glad to know you, Ursa.

You are able to craft the verbiage that so many of us have bouncing around in our heads like an angry bee. Thanks for taking the time to say what needs to be said.

And yes... I believe you are completely right. And yes, you WILL "make the cut"... you already have, and you can rest in that peace.

If the Father's love depends on us getting it right, then we're all in big, big trouble. That's why He revealed His love for us through the cross of Jesus. He knew that we needed something to assure us of His incredible love.

October 03, 2006 1:51 PM  
Blogger BruceD said...

... and He knew that we could never rest until we had that assurance. But now we have entered into His peace, comforted by His everlasting love, and able to enjoy life with Him completely.

October 03, 2006 1:52 PM  
Blogger SocietyVs said...

Searching for the truth outside their doctrination might seem cloudy, but within their walls it's even worse; there is no lea-way for questioning. I think you do what you can and continue to ask the questions that scare most religious folk, I mean why not?

October 04, 2006 2:14 PM  
Blogger Soul Food Dude said...

Ursa, I have often felt -- and here and there still do feel -- the way that you have expressed here. I find much solace in looking at the sky, day and night. I think God's looking down at me when stare at it.

Remember that passage in Isaiah about a great earthquake and storm and whatever else coming, and there was no voice of God, but then Isaiah heard that little whisper, on a quiet wind?

I think God speaks in silence. I cannot explain why he would do this, except that it may have something to do with us coming to know him through faith, that the silence lets our hearts ripen. Rest assured that if God is silent, he's not going to burn you for any theological errors you might make.

In the end, I think Luther is right, that one must trust one's conscience, and that the Lord even beckons that we do so... "Why don't you judge for yourselves what is right?" (Somewhere is Luke)

Jathan

October 08, 2006 2:21 AM  

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