Finding God is an inescapable task, even for those who deny God, they have found Him and sent Him into the myth box or the library of fairy tales or the laboratory of science. Those who have lost God know where and when they lost Him. Some of us have simply misplaced God, put Him in the wrong priority level. We know He is around here somewhere.
As a little kid, knowing God helps hold back the onslaught of super complicated reality and all the questions that demand answers. Knowing God holds the barking fears at bay until the child can deal with them one at a time. The problem comes when unexplainable bad things overwhelm the kid and life’s problems outrun the explanations he can understand. The foundation is exploded before it’s even built.
It’s Good Friday in town and the streets are nearly empty. No school or court today. Free parking because Rod the ticket man is off with all the Boro employees. Even Leonard the gas man is home and out of uniform. Quiet. Some folks are finding God, but I imagine most are finding stuff to do–shopping, cleaning, planting flowers, traveling, trout fishing, golfing, drinking beer, baking cakes, walking aimlessly with heavy back packs, hallucinating, waiting for good news, getting hair cuts.
As a teenager knowing God helps counterbalance the power shifts with your parents. When you are so mad or disappointed with your mom or dad, you still have a parent to listen to you. Even orphans can have this parent. Teens are learning to think for themselves and tend toward the idealistic. They hate to hear about moderation and mostly good adults. Somehow they believe that it is possible to be 100% pure and good and kind to everyone. They are optimistic about human nature though they have not witnessed a representative sample of it yet. God and Jesus and Grandma are pure and holy, they reason, so it’s possible for them and their friends and family to be the same…if they all just try harder. Every generation does this dance with idealism.
As young adults you finally figure out that grandma was a good actress; and your closest, purest friend is in an abusive relationship; and your drinking water has some nasty chemicals in it because a trusted protection system failed. Human error all around. God and Jesus remain pure and good and holy, but everyone else sucks to some degree. And you wonder about this great divide between God and mankind. Ah, but it will be completely different when you have kids.
Weddings are perfect opportunities to deny the ugly reality that marriage can be. Weddings are staged and scripted for months, and then marriage happens spontaneously. Wedding snapshots are perfect, and then reality begins gnawing at the edges. Dreams don’t have to die, but they do need to be adjusted, postponed, financed, or reframed. Usually there is a crisis point where one must choose between the ideal dream and the real person snoring next to them. So often we choose the unmitigated dream and sever the imperfect relationship.
Take the leap of faith, my Godbloggets.