Eric's Sunday Sermon; Let Us Talk About Your Personal God
My son now six wants to remain a small child forever.
Celebrate that we are made different
(a quick note. Medical issues held me back a week. Great Doc's and Great prayers left me without a moment of despair or worry. I wish I could give my faith away to others who need it more than I)
Let us begin with a simple absolute truth. The absolute truth we speak of here is that we are all different. Probably most of us believe that our God has much to do with truth. But this one is easy across the board even for an Atheist or Agnostic. We are all different.
A young son asked his father; “Dad why are all the roses on our rose bushes different?” So the father duly went and got a good magnifying glass and had the boy examine the blades of grass. Then they poured out some rice and examined those. Then they examined their model of the planets in our system. And finally they ended with the boy writing out love ten times trying hard to make each word just like the one before. Then ants were discussed along with the stars at night. The message became obvious. All things in nature are ultimately different. And each is special in it’s own way.
Now we contradict the above. I have traveled the globe and been in confidential positions to illicit actual deep conversations, from legal to clergy to therapy and of course employment. To a person I have never met someone without love. Oh to be sure the love was different and yet I tell you it was also the same. A force within each of us that transcends our thoughts and intellect. Somehow an energy that is a bridge between our humanness and our godliness. In case you are wondering about the exception of the psychopath I now believe that even they possess this thing of love. Psychiatry just cannot tap into it for they are based on a type of scientific logic. My considered opinion is that love is omnipresent and therefor omnipotent.
Hopefully this introductory stuff allows us to talk about your God. In short, how can we share a concept of God when each of us has our own body, mind and soul? We propose that this is not a bad thing but a good thing.
I got real lucky.
My wife has arms like this song
I would have trouble loving you if you were just like me.
Just for an example I like to attend a church where there are two quiet moments. One to review our lives and ask God to relieve of our errors and help guide us to do better. Some call that a confession of sins. Then there is the time when we are to quietly just between our God and us pray for others. There is absolutely no need for me to attend a church to do that by myself. In my case I get so wonkers that I have do it at the least 1 time a day. Now make no mistake in the church setting everyone is different, seeing a different personal God and praying for different things. But love is involved. No hate. No anger. No hubris. A love born in supplication and humility. We are all so different, yet we are so the same in taking the same action at the same time. In essence a communion with a God special and different for everyone. I find the same in communal singing. The choir is made up of so many voices each different, the real choir is of course is the community and most are lousy singers. But to a one the voice most heard is their own.
We use the above example to illustrate that even within a group of “like minded and like faith”, there is still the differences. Let me not fail to mention the wonderful mosques, temples and monasteries and sanghas and sweat lodges where I have seen the same. Like snowflakes not one the same but together leaving a blanket of snow, that actually nourishes our wonderful earth.
Now I diverge from what is my like. Leaders of groups and folks that want all to accept texts the way that they “understand” them are missing the juice of this happening of creation where we are all different. This is contrary to the reality. Your God and mine would not be so contrary to what is. How can we even accept that we are to think and feel the same if we are so clearly created different? The beauty of what your God has created should not be changed by man. I make no condemnation of organized religion here, not at all. I think commonality of ritual and doctrine is like warm ups before a sporting competition. They help get our heads and bodies focused. But we should be weary between community and blind commonality.
Why did a Native American leave this mark that looks so much like a cross?
This song reminds me that I don't want to meet my maker with anger in my heart.
My God don't need to punish me, I do that fine all by myself.
Now let us get to the good stuff – your God. There are something like 7 billion folks on this earth. Now assuming the absolute truth that everyone of us is different and special, does that mean there are 7 billion Gods? I think that is just too hard of a leap of faith to make. In probably all colleges in many disciplines from philosophy to police science to sociology they do a stunt. It goes like this. A gunman bursts into the room and shoots the professor and then turns and runs out. The students then write a report of what happened. Same occurrence and yet there are invariably as many accounts as there are students.
So is it hard to believe that God is one occurrence and yet we have over 7 billion accounts of God? Of course we all know the uncomfortable scene of husband and wife telling stories of their adventures on a vacation and they just arguing about what really happened. My wife and I were praying for some friends of ours. When we were done I was compelled to go to them and lend a physical hand, my wife picked up the phone and just listened and let the wife vent. Same God basically the same prayer and basically two different answers. Hey, and we think our God is the same as each others.
There is a man and in his life he has been a trial attorney, the kind with twelve jurors and he has been a preacher, the kind with 50 or more in the pews and he has been a coach, the kind with 20 or more players. He was one man yet each person in each circumstance heard something different from him even though he spoke the same words. How much more does God speak the same to millions and yet everyone hears something different?
Can I, as the author of a sermon tell you who is your God? I think that would be folly. But I can speak of my God. My God is the energy of the billions of souls sending forth the synthesis and synergism of love. A non-being yet a force that can conquer all and is everywhere at once. A power we can and do tap into whenever we seek or act in love. God granted me four children, three who are adults. In error I punished each one twice. They are wise enough to know that when they error, they fall away from the love which is God and they do what it takes to get back to being right.
You really do not need to connect with what is already part of you.
Let me end with a word of suggestion. Don’t let anyone tell you how to connect to your God. Because you do not need that advice. You need to get really comfy and fill your heart with love and poof God is so much a part of you that you really do not need to connect any more than you need to connect with your own heart. I pray today that you shine on your God.