The infamous “Mum and Dad are away” parties. The “secret affair” behind “their back”. The “little addiction” I never call an addiction (but only “indulge” when no one is watching). The stuff we do (for which there are consequences if we are found out). The stuff we do (when we think we can get away with it). The stuff we do (and justify to ourselves as okay – but never do “in front of” others).
Or add up all those secret minutes checking social media at work. All those “it’s only a few pens”. All those daydreaming minutes where we “hate my job” – and imagine a better life (if only …). And how we do all this without anyone knowing (usually) –
“It’s only … (something really small, really okay, not hurting anyone, not worth telling anyone, better for everyone).”
Which really means “better for me that they don’t find out”. We all have our own personal “concealer” in our moral make-up (and made-up) pack.
The bible talks about The Second Coming. Much has been written about it. There are many scholarly theories. Many biblical interpretations. Christians get hung-up on the “when” of the Second Coming. Many pray for it (secure in their belief that they have a front-row ticket).
And yet we still steal from each other and ourselves – we steal time, integrity, trust, and love. We are still dishonest and scheming. And we justify it day after day.
“I have talked to God about this – He is okay with me (fill in the blank)”. Or “If this was bad God would tell me – and He hasn’t – so that makes it okay”. Or “As long as (name) doesn’t find out – no one’s getting hurt – so why tell (name)?” Or “It’s only (fill in blank). And look at how much I do for them and they never think to say thank you – let alone pay me. They owe me really.”
I have/had/will have things in my life I said/have said/will say all of those to. I don’t pray for the Second Coming.
But not for that reason.
‘But know this: if the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an unexpected hour.’ Peter said, ‘Lord, are you telling this parable for us or for everyone?’ And the Lord said, ‘Who then is the faithful and prudent manager whom his master will put in charge of his slaves, to give them their allowance of food at the proper time? Blessed is that slave whom his master will find at work when he arrives. Truly I tell you, he will put that one in charge of all his possessions. But if that slave says to himself, “My master is delayed in coming”, and if he begins to beat the other slaves, men and women, and to eat and drink and get drunk, the master of that slave will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour that he does not know, and will cut him in pieces, and put him with the unfaithful. That slave who knew what his master wanted, but did not prepare himself or do what was wanted, will receive a severe beating. But one who did not know and did what deserved a beating will receive a light beating. From everyone to whom much has been given, much will be required; and from one to whom much has been entrusted, even more will be demanded. Luke 12:39-48
‘Lord, are you telling this parable for us or for everyone?’
I don’t pray for The Second Coming – because right now (even as I write these words) my living and indwelling God and I are chatting away together. I am willingly and happily possessed.
I say words I would not otherwise. I write these posts I would not otherwise. I smile at those I would not otherwise. I disagree with those I would not otherwise. And I still tell lies. I still steal from others – little stuff – time – and integrity. I use my own “concealer”. I still get angry. I still make bad choices. I am imperfect. I am possessed of God Soft Hands Jesus. Willingly and happily.
And that makes me perfect – not in the doing – but in the not lying (less and less).
Not to my GSHJ – my other half. And more and more not to my other “other half” – my soul mate, my lover, my friend here on earth. I know I cannot lie to God Soft Hands Jesus. I desire not to lie to my earthly partner. I find less and less desire to “morally conceal”. I find more and more the desire to be kind. I find the urge to deliver “others’ expectations” to be less (unless it is in synch).
Pain free? No. Struggle free? Rewarding? Fulfilling? Profitable? Easy? Get it right every time? No and no again. Except for this.
When presented with a “moral crossroads” choice – I make that choice with my inner God. And should I find I have chosen the wrong path – He guides me even then. I find He is constant. I find He is unconditional. And THAT makes me want to be the same.
THAT – for me – is the difference between secular personal improvement, and spiritual living improvement. Neither better nor worse. Both with much in common. Except mine is free. Secular personal improvement usually means paying someone else in hard cash and getting a reward in esteem, standing or wealth (or all of them). God paid the price and does not promise any of those.
God paid the price with unconditional love (which we prefer to call “blood”). God promises unconditional love (which we prefer to think “not enough”).
Why do we call it “paid in blood”? Might that allow us to know “we could never” pay “that” (except maybe once). And might that ease the discomfort of confronting the reality of “unconditional love” (as anything other than another “Christian jargon” kind of phrase)? Because (we say) love is not enough – we need rules (for others) – because someone will take advantage (of me) if it is only “about love”. And does talking about “being covered in blood” distance us from love – makes love a “given” (to me), rather than (for me) “to give”?
And THAT is why I don’t wish … pray … hope … for “The Second Coming”. Why should I –
I am having too much fun with God, those around me, and those I have yet to know. I desire – I want – to be THAT unconditional more and more every day.