As a child…

“Is the baby naked inside your belly?” ~ Ivy

Meg reads about the arrival of the Royal newlyweds, while I read about politics. She flips through pictures of dresses, while I contemplate debates and meetings at the White House. Normally I am surprised by the popularity of the Life section over the Front page – but in this moment, it seems she is reading the only section that is making any difference. Styles are changing, while the government remains stuck in the anger stage.

We are well aware of the stages of grief (denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance). Our elected officials have moved past denying the problem, but they only feign at bargaining. Instead they continue to slander and badger. Leaving us depressed as we are the ones who must accept the grief of reality.

During prayer time, Phoebe began to speak gibberish. Then tapped our foreheads with her pointer finger and said “Amen”. I think this may be the beginnings of a charismatic slaying of the Spirit!

I am right. You are wrong. I know this because… Know-it-all’s are pretty common. Which you think would mean a lot of people agree. But know-it-all’s often come to different conclusions – which I suppose means someone is wrong. Of course the one thing they know for sure is that they are not wrong.

This is the reality of our government. Two opposite sides convinced they are correct. So they stake out polar agendas,while the country is stretched to breaking. Of course our country slain is not a problem. Fixing the country is not the goal.

This is reality not just in the halls of Washington – but in church. On some level it is good to be passionate about our ideas and knowledge. But we are delusional if we think that we know it all. There is only One who can accurately claim this title.

“There are white tigers, daddy”
“Yes, I know.”
“They are white with black and gray spots.”
“No, that is a snow leopard, white tigers are white with black stripes.”
“No daddy…”

As children we pick up facts and details, but we often get confused. Our knowledge is so incomplete and new, that we twist things around. For that matter sometimes we are told bad information (take the image of Pogo, I downloaded it and the title was “White Tiger VBS Day 3” – but it is clearly not a white tiger!).

In this world we need to realize we are in much the same position. We are God’s children. A wonderful place, because He is teaching us! But, we do not grasp everything. We do not have a clear view of reality. Our world is tainted by sin – as Paul writes, “For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror, but then we will see face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been known fully.” (1 Cor 13:12). No matter what we do, we are constantly looking through distorted lens. Occasionally God will speak and open our eyes, but fog lifts only for a second.

Yet this is not a problem. Because Christianity is not about knowledge.

Consider wisdom. Age is required. Experience is required. But age and experience do not necessarily produce wisdom. In the same way, knowledge is required for Christianity. But a list of facts does not necessarily lead to salvation.

Paul continues with the most important point, “Now these three remain: faith, hope, and love. The greatest of these is love.”

* * *

I came to all this while reading 1 John. In pride I was pondering how I am always correct (insert Megan rolling her eyes!). If people only knew what I knew, we could move past this issue or that… when I read this, Anyone who loves their brother and sister lives in the light, and there is nothing in them to make them stumble. But anyone who hates a brother or sister is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness. They do not know where they are going, because the darkness has blinded them.” (2:10-11)

In all my loveless pride, I was the one stumbling in darkness… it does not matter if I have the right facts…

2 thoughts on “As a child…

  1. Yes, I do miss your words, Sean……and you of course. This blog reminds me of something that I say a lot……in fact I credit it with saving my marriage and producing harmony in many situations…including my high school science classroom. The quote is, “You’re right, but I’m not wrong.”…..Now if the person with whom I am in the midst of the “conversation” stops and thinks for a second or two….what I’ve just said is of course ridiculous and the argument continues….BUT you’d be suprised how often this statement diffuses things….seems that this is much of what seems to happen in many matters in the world from politics to religion…..there is either war or agreement to agree to disagree…neither of which solves a thing. Thanks for the reminder that knowledge doesn’t necessarily equate to truth or righteousness or salvation……there is ultimately only one truth and one way to salvation……..God’s Word, Jesus Christ… other name…..period…..thanks…love and miss ya’ll.Lisa

  2. Goodness Lisa! You left me thinking… hence the age it took to reply!

    You are right, there are times to shout, “You’re right, but I’m not wrong!” But other times we stop the war, only to “agree to disagree” – but where does this leave us? Often without fellowship and avoidance, etc. Especially in today’s age of choice – where everyone can find a group who believes the same. Even a church to fit their own beliefs (“Have it your way Church”). Often we, even church leadership, accept these transitions: “It was for the best, they did not really fit here…”

    I am sure war over the trivial is not the answer – still, I wonder, what is the right path forward? Can we learn to love – keep fellowship – when we “agree to disagree”??

    Or will we just continue to split and divide…

    The root of the issue may our belief in ourselves. In our own infallibility. We rarely consider the possibility that we may be wrong!! Can we learn to admit our own fallibility??

    As I said, you left me pondering – I am still working all this out. What I do know is that we are all called into submission before God. What He says is truth. And our church jumping should be based on His leadership – not our discussions.

    Hope all is well in Augusta!

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