I had a thought while standing in church last Sunday.
Some folks might think that’s radical.
The thought I had was imagining God looking down at the entire congregation, and really seeing them (as He may do).
I should mention that I attend a moderately sized church so we are talking about 600-700 people in a predominately Liberal Democratic state with a predominately Conservative Republican demographic (fundie).
Anyway, I imagined the diversity of each individual concept of the One True God we were all worshiping. Each of these perspectives shaped by their own experiences and understanding. Just like the diversity of clothing we wear, we bring our understanding of the God we imagine to the act of worship. As I thought about this I realized that I had always just imagined everyone saw the same God I did, like we all saw the same cross on the back wall. I also imagined we had the same beliefs since we were all in the same church listening to the same sermons. I don’t think that’s true now because I realize we each have differences in how we interpret those sermons as the Holy Spirit highlights areas each of us need to grow in, and because we bring different experiences to the table. Put another way we have different pasts and different futures that the actual One True God is working with.
As the week has progressed I’ve seen more diversity in Christian perspectives on the web as well. I saw people who seemed to believe you had to be a narrow minded and bigoted conservative to be a Christian (well actually that perspective was usually a definition supplied by liberals). I have also seen very broad, all inclusive, feel good, no consequences everybody goes to heaven Christian perspectives (as a narrow minded and bigoted conservative I am able to supply the alternate view 😉 ).
I guess what I’m saying here is that we do a heck of a job with US and THEM, but the thought I had last Sunday was that God doesn’t see it that way.
He sees HIS.
Imagine if you will that we are sitting in the back seat of the universe as Christ is bringing us to His Father’s mansions. Do we really want to make Him pull over?
That was never fun for me.