Thursday, January 3, 2013

Praxis - Think like Jesus - God made that

All the historic Christian creeds (and I know some people don’t care for them) begin where the Bible begins, and where God clearly began.  I believe in God… Maker of heaven and earth is the way we affirm In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth (Genesis 1:1). 
   Is science a problem?  Why should it be?  God left volcanic ash, dinosaur skeletons, nebulas and DNA lying around so inquiring minds would be baffled, then amazed, then lost in wonder, love and praise over how magnificently huge, creative, powerful and yet tender God must be. 
   God made the incredible brain of Stephen Hawking, who has explained how we don’t need recourse to God to explain how the universe came to be.  I don’t think God minds – because God doesn’t want to compel us to believe.  God wants us to choose – and more importantly, to love.  I vote for God as Maker.  The alternative is frankly much harder to believe – that all this, and my life, happened to occur just randomly? and then there’s no meaning or purpose?

   But how to love this Maker of heaven and earth?  By loving what God made, admiring the eagles, sunrises, wildflowers, meteors, and hummingbirds, and by what often is much harder:  loving the people made in God’s image, made in such a way that they show us something about God.  Every one of them, even the prickly, difficult, challenged.  Look at anybody, and you see love, dreams, feelings, abilities, goals, exasperation, tears and laughter.  Through what God made, we learn God is like that.

   So how to think like Jesus?  Look at a tree waving in the breeze, the squash on your plate, the money in your account, the way you know how to make a soufflé, a squirrel scampering by, the time you have this evening, the child who buffaloes you, and especially that familiar stranger you see in the mirror:  stammer over the beauty.  God made that, God owns that, God has a reason for that, God makes me responsible to take good care of that and figure out what our purpose might be.  You belong to God.  Repeat that, whisper it to yourself, jot it down as #1 on your calendar every day.  Think like Jesus.

   This is the beginning of all we believe.  Next in Praxis, we will look at some utterly simple things we encounter day to day, and reflect on how to think – and live – like Jesus:  the dishes, the alarm clock, your clothes closet, and driving around.