Advent 2016: Two Gods

Readings: Psalm 124, Isaiah 54:1-10, Matthew 24: 23-35

There are a few things I’m sure of in the world…

  • The Lakers will always make a comeback after a few rough seasons
  • Heathcliff will always seem both romantic and mean when I pick up Wutherings Heights each year between Christmas and New Year
  • On any given day, my hair will do whatever it wants
  • The Pacific Ocean will never cease to cause my heart to stir and relax all at the same time

On the other hand, I am not sure about so many other thing. A few of which include:

  • Why people love Dan Brown books
  • What goes on in someone’s mind before they begin to berate, bully, or lie about someone else
  • The appeal of William Shatner

I do know that one of the most freeing moments I ever faced as an adult was the day I realized that it was okay to be unsure, uncertain, and have absolutely no idea what to do next. When I learned to say “I don’t know,” my whole life changed.

I grew up in a world of certainty, of black and white, of cut and dry. My world consisted of one God, two parents, and a Bible as the arbiters of all that was either in or out, right or wrong, allowed or condemned.

Even as I little kid, I found it all so exhausting.

There was no way to get it right. No way to be good. No way to keep the God of my parents at bay and pleased. I could never get a checklist worked out that felt complete. I could never keep the checklist accurate day to day. And hell…even when I could keep up with it, I just couldn’t fucking get it right every day all the time. The God of my home was impossible to please and I was a lost cause.

What if the Lord had not been on our side? (Psalm 124:1)

But even then…even in the midst of confusion, chaos, and feelings of failure, I knew. I knew that the God I whispered to in my bed at night had made me smart, sassy, creative, and curious. I know that God didn’t mind that I had questions…lots of questions…and that some of them included feeling real doubt about who he was and why he did things this way. God was my companion, my friend, my protector.

And I knew that those two gods were not the same and really had very little in common.

So yeah…there are a lot of things I still don’t know and so many that I likely never will. But this much I know is true:

‘The mountains may disappear,
and the hills may come to an end,
but my love will never disappear;
my promise of peace will not come to an end.’
says the Lord who shows mercy to you.



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