Although I embrace many things written by self-help types such as Louise Hay and Dr. Wayne Dyer, and although I love their insights into the power of the now and the amazing facets of love that God has for us, I do not believe God is a cosmic consciousness or just a omniscient and omnipresent force. I love reading the Tao Te Ching and other books where I can glean great nuggets of wisdom and insight, but my foundational source of knowledge is the Bible.
I know some reading this will think the whole idea of God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit is just too tainted a subject from their past religious experience to look at again or it is too burdened down with doctrinal hogwash. Some may think it is just the “opiate of the masses” for power hungry religious leaders to use to control others. Others might say it is all mumbo jumbo and worthless in this modern technological and enlightened age.
I will tell you that a real relationship with God is totally different than that, and that my husband and I have seen changes in ourselves only a divine power could have made happen. My mom lives with us, and my husband has rarely if ever called her his “mother-in-law” because those words often translate to a very negative image. He always refers to her as “my wife’s mom.” My mother is losing her memory from Alzheimer’s and stroke, and she has been known to lock us out of the house, nearly kill our cats, throw out important papers, and almost burn down the house, but his patience with her and my stress over caretaking her is beyond that of Biblical Job. My husband has seen me change and grow over the years as well, healing from past wounds, opening my heart, and learning to let go and let God.
Although we are both very strong personality types with strong opinions, we have never had a fight of note because we decided early that Christ would be our third partner in marriage. We share our thoughts, give each other space, apologize when wrong, and try to love each other in ways the other one appreciates. One of my husband’s sisters visited us and heard us at breakfast one morning in a disagreement that would have gone loud and angry in most marriages. She looked at us like we were crazy to be disagreeing so much without normal conflict, and she said, “Are you two aliens or what?” This is not about us being so wise and wonderful. This is God working in us, helping us deal with stress, and showing us the power of grace and forgiveness. This is what God is all about — changing the hearts and minds of people so their lives become whole, meaningful, enjoyable, fulfilling, and transforming — all with a richness and depth that fills and heals all the empty, wounded places.
The God I know transforms people and situations, but I fought him a long time before getting to this point. I knew God could forgive every sin known to mankind, but I thought for a long time that he could not overcome my own defenses against ever becoming vulnerable again. The early childhood deaths of my sister, father, and grandfather within a period of a few years left me hardened in a way I thought God could not touch. I was wrong. He sent me a wild and crazy and lovable husband who has been my 15-year example of how to live without walls around the heart.
I know God is a God of justice, love, and mercy. As Creator, he set up this world and our place in it. His Bible is his inspired word, written for lay people to understand with help from the Holy Spirit. I believe God’s justice has rules, including the one that says, “the wages of sin is death.” He sent his son Jesus Christ to pay the price for our sins with his own death so that we can have a relationship with God the Father. I know that you don’t have to try to get more perfect, clean yourself up, or come out of addiction to ask Jesus to forgive your sins and accept him as your Savior. Christ accepts us where we are, no matter what.
Two online source for more information are:
NOTE: This About beliefs section is, like the life of a person following Christ, in transition. As I grow “in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ” and gain greater understanding, I hope to improve this section with more details and examples.