God in our own image…

I have two friends on my mind this morning. There is one that I have never met, but I know her and love her, nonetheless. And there is another that I have known for ever, it seems, but haven’t had in my life for a very long time and I am afraid that we don’t know each other any more.

In a more charismatic, perhaps mystical language, I might call it a “burden on my heart.” I love that language. It takes what is the elusive, illusive substance of God and finds words to convey a realness, a solidity of Godness that the more conservative, non-mystical side of me fears to express.

We can have constant conversation with God through thought, through prayer, but why is it that when it comes to God talking back we hesitate, we become uncertain and pull back from expressing an encounter in conversation with Him. Why is that so strange an idea?

Conversation has its problems, no doubt. There are misunderstandings, sometimes we aren’t listening well, sometimes we project our own needs and desires or prejudices into the meaning of another person’s words and the conversation becomes lost in a mire. Anne Lamott once said:

“You can safely assume you’ve created God in your own image when it turns out he hates all the same people you do.”

My long time friend, who I had lost touch with (a nice way to say that we parted ways because of a disagreement), wrote this in an email the other day:

“I know you are all ‘love everybody’ and be accepting and everything, but…”

When I read that I had to stop, sit back in my chair and ponder that for a moment. Really? I’m all “love everybody” and everything?? I wish! I mean, yes, I want to love my neighbor as myself and all that, but am I? Do I? No. No way. I fall short of that mark on a daily basis.

But what really worried me about what she said was that it sounded like her understanding of a Christian is that we think that we are holier than other people, we are better than other people. And, yes, I’ll admit that there are a LOT of “holier than thou” Christians walking around on this earth, but let me tell ya, Sistah, THEY AIN’T RIGHT!

I am just as broken and bloodied and beaten down and as hungry as anyone else. I’ve just found a place where I can have my wounds tended, where I can be lifted up, where I can be fed.

And it’s okay if you don’t believe in God, my friend, God believes in you.

Oh, and about my other friend. Her latest blog post just popped up. She’s focused, open and willing, and I’m loving her perspective. She is teaching me (and herself) about listening with the heart and eye as well as the ears. Hello, Beloved Friend.

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~ by Kimberly Mason on October 16, 2009.

5 Responses to “God in our own image…”

  1. Don’t you just love Anne Lamott? We all struggle and we all fall down and fail, but like you said, when we can find a place where we can have our wounds tended, be lifted up, and where we can be fed, that is precisely the way we become more human. Love and peace to you today my friend.

  2. See what you WANT TO SEE (beauty of God in ALL of nature0 and you’ll be what you want to BE (beauty of God as expressing through YOUR nature). Or something like this ~ for a unique and consciousness-raising view of nature, I invite you visit the website http://www.strategicbookpublishing.com/LiveFromtheMystic.html for info about my newly published book of metaphysical poetry ~ Live, From the Mystic. It is a view that brings harmony and peace. Seek ye first … and the rest is added to your experience. Period. It works.

  3. I don’t use the word Christian when I speak about my spirituality for this exact reason, Kim. I say “God lover” or “God hippy” because I don’t want others to be turned off by what I say about God and my relationship with him and I don’t want these crazy assumptions flying at me either. I, unfortunately, don’t love every warm body that walks. I want to bring down the thunder to smite some people’s behinds – Psalms style. slow smile. I own the broken bloody mess you say. I always ask when I get all fired up, “Where is He in this?” and “What is He trying to teach me here?” I also know if, in this way, I keep looking, keep listening, keep feasting (I love it that you use this verb! To be fed…yes!), I’ll find God in everyone. Perhaps if I can find Him in them and love on them, they’ll find it too and guard it from the outside world. Just a hope, my hope, my fatal flaw.

  4. I hope you are taking good care of yourself while you are sick! your words, ponderings and posts are such a good part of my day! Hurry back when you are well!

  5. Love, love, LOVE that Lamott quote. She’s so amazing; I always wish I had her balls (though I wouldn’t want to go through what she went through to get them…)

    Hope you’re feeling better; I’ve had friends who’ve been knocked out for a week or two by this thing…

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