There is a God that so many of us grew up with, who is like a policeman with a radar gun on the highway, always watching and waiting to doll out punishment if we break the law. We all know this God well. He wants us to avoid sin at all costs by following the rules, never failing, never breaking, or else wrath.
This picture of God, spoken of in so many churches, countless mosques and synagogues across all lands, this God is no longer needed. For it is a caricature, an unhelpful shadow of the real God. This Tyrant with his rules is no longer helpful because our task is not to be good, but to become good. And true becoming, true development is impossible without mistakes; to become good we need a god who can help us encounter our guilt, grow through sufferings, transform darkness into spirit maturity. But the god of rules knows nothing of this. For the tyrant with the radar gun has never transformed through pain, only condemns from afar.
What is most needed today is a relationship with a God who has in love entered the darkness with us, suffered and come through the power of sin. We need a god who knows how to become new because we must become new. We need a God who knows that there is light hidden in the darkness. A god who knows that…
|“There is a brokenness
out of which comes the unbroken,
out of which blooms the unshatterable.
[A god who knows] There is a sorrow beyond all grief which leads to joy
(excerpt from Rashani poem)
Dear Friends, In our gospel today (Feeding of the Five-thousand), the real picture of the God of the Human heart is shown; not the harsh judge, but He who nourishes us with spirit-bread, feeds us communion on our way to becoming, who knows first hand that the human journey is not to remain innocent of the dark, but to learn the light of love, in and through the night.
This God, this Christ, is what is needed!
This contemplation by Rev. Evans is inspired by a sermon that was given at a local mosque and by Luke 9: 1-17