I feel no need to dismiss the bible


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Two weeks today it’s all over.  The preparations, the planning, the spending, the cooking, the where do we put everyone and everything, the bending of the Coronavirus “restrictions” … all of that will be consigned to another memory of another Christmas.  About the time when the house starts to feel a tad claustrophobic – when the urge to live without being festooned in all things Christmas calls quietly and then ever louder.

No matter how much some of us try and keep this about the “real reason for Christmas” … a bible and a baby … God and our sin … our salvation in just three-four months down the road … each day brings its own challenges and surprises.  A moment of laughter now, then a let-down there, a magical minutes here and a small disappointment there … the rhythm of life is like the tides – always on the move – never staying still.

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Back in February-March all of that was irrelevant.  The Rona in Coronavirus walked among us.  The whole world caught fire as Rona piggy-backed from one global citizen to another.  A hug, handshake or kiss was then the likely touch-kiss of death.  And look at us now.  Mere months later.  That feeling of invulnerability sweeping the globe faster than even Rona can.  It will always happen to someone else not me. It is our strength and our weakness.   Created in God’s image? 

With a few manmade “customisations” along the way perhaps.

It reminds me of swimming.  How as a child I was scared not of water but of water deeper than the height of my chin.  If the water was a manmade swimming pool.  If not then I was scared of “water” that might sweep my feet from under me.  Inches or feet – it mattered not.  I remember our dad spent a lot of his life shivering in thigh-deep water (for him) with one hand beneath our tummies while we spent a lot of our young lives – one by one – learning to swim.  There were six of us.  Not sure how many dad-hours/years it took for him to see all of us finally swim away from his ever-present hand beneath us.  But once I could and did – water was my plaything!  Diving … swimming under water (on purpose now!) .. being pushed-in and pushing others in .. running and playing tag … sore-stinging eyes … that weird “chlorine-halo” around the orange streetlamps on the way home … 

My fear left and invulnerable returned.

Same with Rona.  Once I “swam away” from the hand of fear my invulnerabile returned.  Just like being immersed in water and learning to swim without fear – so being “immersed in Rona” (as the science then said/implied) was not the death sentence I was told.  I could see and be with those I loved, those I knew, those I worked with, even be amongst strangers … and still lived to tell the tale.

So long as I took sensible precautions and lived “risk-safe” as always.

Water can and does kill.  So too Rona.  So too much of what I am surrounded by day-after-day.  Just like sin (I was taught by a different “science”).  Sin – just like Rona – is everywhere without and within.  I am powerless to live without sin.  Sin is within every cell of my being I was taught.  Yet I live every day.   And I Love every day.  And – just like Rona – it seems I can live and love even “immersed” in all this sin.

Rona is science.  Sin is not.

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if you have read my journey you will know I was brought up to fear sin.  To believe as science that God (of the bible) is fact.  To defend God (and the bible) as proven irrefutable fact.  And now I don’t. 

Except I feel no need to dismiss the bible.  Feel no desire to have to agree that it is all hogwash and irrelevant.  I do think there is something bigger than me and you.  But I feel no need to have to define and make that “something” stacked with evidence you must (of course) believe as well.  Just like Rona – there are many who dismiss the whole thing as a conspiracy.

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To me that is as closed-minded as being a “believer” of a biblical God defined and measured, counted and weighed, extrapolated from imagination to become “indisputable fact”.

I am not sure “God” ever intended that we go to war with each other over him-her-it.   Not sure that “God” ever needs us to be so certain in our beliefs that change year after year (whether we want them to or not).  The “God of the bible” desires rather than needs, invites rather than dictates, welcomes rather than judges, speaks of “now” much more than “then”.  

I like that.  I like my eternity right now rather than then.  I like that each moment is filled with so much I never knew.  That I am filled with so much I never knew.  That we are filled with so much if we each allow.  I call that Love and kindness but you don’t have to.  Love just like in the bible and all around me if I look for it.  Love I was taught to fear by religion and which I now think weird.  Religion that (seemingly) fears the freedom and empowerment of Love without condition (despite teaching and preaching it). 

I look back and see that I was taught to fear Love without condition.  That I love the wrong things, the wrong people, the wrong beliefs, the wrong “God”.  And now I don’t.  God-Love-me-you is all mixed up like a delicious Christmas present.  Now I swim freely in Love every day and with everyone (if I allow). 

And as I write these words, I hear the “God” I have found along my journey, chuckling in every cell of my being. 

Me or God … belief or fact … ?

The God I have found doesn’t care – so why should I? 

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