Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Losing religion

In our twenties, we heard someone talking about fundamentalism and thought it sounded helpful with plenty of rules and explanations. We decided that's what we'd be.  It didn't last, but it was helpful to see why.  

The presumption of knowing God so well that we could say who would or wouldn't be loved and brought in ..., well, it smelled pretty bad after awhile.  Being able to judge others wasn't helpful.  Being among the very few who would be saved while all the rest of these billions were condemned to hell, that was cancerous, almost.  None of that anger and condemnation is supportable from the bible, at least the way I read it.

Church?  Or fantasy land?  What is it?

So, what might we embrace in good conscience about God, his son, and his invitation? Ah, that's the question.

What to do with 'church' is part of the problem, but it isn't first. First is what you can in good conscience believe; not wish, not hope, not anything but actually believe. Anything else is a bit dishonest, at least I think so.

A big question that follows quickly is 'what is it all for?' What do I do with the belief I have.

So now we're frighteningly intrigued; tiptoeing gingerly around the corner where you can just see the very edge of the light that shines around the good God ... stunned, we wonder what's next?

Go to church? Sit in a pew for a few years? Go just on Sunday mornings, or on Wednesday nights too? Wait a minute; I'm not sure any of that is relevant yet. Is it?

Wait, wait, wait, wait! I just skirted the edge of something so huge, I wept and didn't know why. I think I want to go stay there for awhile; I think there's a part of me that lives there, or should. 

(OK, now you can go to a church, but not to sit. Go to find others who've been to the place you saw and can lead you back there and show you around.)

Membership, attendance, being part of a culture with a particular bent, none will satisfy that desire to enter the room and know for yourself. Such knowing and belief are honest, and surprisingly strong for being so.