The Three-Letter-Word

 

There is a subject that has been heavy on my heart for many months now. A recent, feeling post by Jesse Loop has reignited it to the point where words are starting to flow out of my heart and through my fingers.

It’s the subject of the “three-letter-word.”

Brains are whirring. I know, mine did. It’s hard to come up with a foul word that only has three letters. A word that makes you wince inwardly at the mental picture it brings up. A word that leaves a bad taste in your mouth when you think of what it means, and how it is used. A word that many people try not to say in polite company. Yes, that bad.

And mousewords is gonna say it on her blog.

God.

The very thought of God has become detestable to many…because of the way He has been portrayed by those who call themselves His people.

Sexual abuse in the name of God. Child abuse in the name of God. Emotional abuse, spousal abuse. Racial discrimination. Religious intolerance.

Too often, the result is that the victim of abuse recoils from the God whose name was used in the justification of unconscionable actions. Others who witness such abuse and discrimination are disgusted by many so-called “Christians.” The righteousness in their souls shrinks away from being associated with such a “God.”

And people are driven away.

So what do I think when I hear someone say that the actions of others have caused them to turn away from God? Do I think, “You’re doomed.” “You must be a bad person, or you couldn’t say that.” “You better repent pretty fast, or there will be hell to pay (literally).”

No.

When someone turns away from God, my heart cries. Not because of the hellish doom they are facing.

Because of the incredible love they are missing.

And God the Father of all cries with me.

The “sinner” is not the person who has been hurt and has turned away from the thought of God out of revulsion for what has been done in God’s name. The sinner is the one who claims to be a Christian, and yet would do something to harm the body or spirit of another.

The damage may be done out of selfish interests, or out of misguided good intentions. Either way, the result is the same.

One is driven away…and that’s not the one who needs to fear for their eternal soul.

So how do I know this? God said it. When one looks at the Bible, words on paper, one finds a very different perspective from what is often taught by people. Clear the air of complicated prose about damnation, and read the words of Jesus. Among many teachers of God’s law, Jesus was not a popular fella. “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them,” the teachers muttered.

In response to that, Jesus told four stories. Stories of ones who had been lost from the fold, missing for some time, caught up in wild living, or consumed by the love of money. In these stories, Jesus portrays God as He is—One who understands the ways of the world, and does whatever it takes to rescue the lost ones. No condemnation from God—He rejoices at the return of the ones He loves.

Which is to say, everyone.

Those who considered themselves experts on God sneered at this perspective. What Jesus said in response to them still holds true today, for anyone who turns the name of God into a three-letter-word.

“You are the ones who justify yourselves in the eyes of men, but God knows your hearts. What is highly valued among men is detestable in God’s sight.”

Those of us who call ourselves Christians, and those of us who have been hurt by ones claiming that name, all need to remember this.

God Himself is really a four-letter-word.

Love.

 

The URI to TrackBack this entry is: https://mousewords.wordpress.com/2008/02/05/the-three-letter-word/trackback/

RSS feed for comments on this post.

10 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. My views of God are different than yours most likely because everyones view of Him are diffrent. Even though I may practice Judaism, this was very well written. God is some many words that can’t be written or said. Well said.

    God Bless You.

  2. Thank you! So very true. The most important thing is for us to show the world what God is really like–all the many wonderful words of Him. May He bless you, too.

  3. The God who is named, is not God. The good book you refer to says that everything was created in Love, in the Likeness of God. All things were created in the likeness of God. Jesus said “Even the least among you can do all that I have done and more” There are only two kinds of people. Those moving away from God (Spirit, Love, Universal mind,Creator) whatever your god is, and those that are moving toward God.

    We do this by moving in closer to ourselves. By not blaming things on outside forces and rather by taking responsibility for everything we see, and experience. Our experiences are defined by the path that we choose to take. I am not a Bible Pusher, or even a preacher of any religion, but I do however promote love. If you create, act, and show love to everyone and everything you come into contact with, the world WILL be a better place.

    Christine, it’s posts like this that will raise the collective consciousness, it is the ability to spread love without pressure that will raise peoples awareness. David Hawkins, in his book Power vs. Force says that every “thing” every “thought” resonates at a certain frequency between 1 and 1000. 1 being the lowest and 1000 being the highest. He tests these frequencies though kinesthetic muscle studies. Some objects or thoughts will make you go weak, and others will make you go strong. We need to promote those things that make people strong. I believe this simple blog post resonates at a very high frequency, and Christine…….you are a beacon of light, and that light shines so bright that it casts out many beings and thoughts of darkness. You are a wonderful person and I thank you very much for this post.

    Love — Keith

  4. Thank you for contributing those thoughts to my blog!

  5. Chris, you have said it all, and said it well! If only we could see God as He really is, instead of as He is portrayed by those who claim to know Him, we would be so stunned and overwhelmed by the power of His great and personal love for each of us. I am going to print your thoughts and post them where they can be an encouragement to me each day. Thanks.

  6. Chris-
    i love you.
    ok now, that was mainly for effect, but isn’t at all false, it’s just a weird thing to say like that so i thought a bit of discaimer was necessary, in context i’m sure you “get it.” ok, formalities done with…
    my first comment is, of course, to praise your words-to-“paper” ability, it’s so good, shows you’re a real “pro.” Thank God the pen is mightier than the bomb.
    secondly, i am not sure if i made it clear that I am not an atheist-but i’m not. I am also not, nor do i EVER recommend anyone, to be pushed away from God, but simply away from the word, (and really more importantly, the actions) as used by “those” who we know are those who we’re talking about. You listd many of the actions of “them” that are those we know are those we’re talking about…but naming them speficially is, to me, to talk of the ones most important just now- president and presidential candidates. I’m worried about the base of those who seem to be the ones that we are talking about having such power in our politics.
    This is my concern, is that those with that political power will continue to push people, not only from the word, but from Him.
    I’m not going to campaign. Promise. But just ask we think about this likely problem inherent in including religion in politics. It really brings a dichotomy-one, we don’t wanna elect someone who is in camps with nonmorality (not a word till just now) but then again, we don’t wanna elect a “christian” that is one that is like what we’ve talked about…
    sigh…i’m conflicted, i suppose. I think we just need to be real careful of a strongly openly staunchly “christian” choice for president. In fact, in this light, I’d say all leading (mccain, hil and O) are ok in this area, they are people of solid faith, yet not overboard, I think, and thefore of decent ethics…so that’s good, it’s mainly Romney that worries me…i wish we could discuss this over tea, hammer out a solution and the rest of the world would be forced to abide by our decision…(didn’t know i was sucha dictator, did ya? lol)…thank you sweetie…you’re amazing.

  7. @Della, I can’t imagine a more wonderful compliment! Thank you for that!

    @Jesse🙂 I thought you expressed your thoughts very clearly on your blog! Thank you for sharing them here–it further illustrates how important it is for any person of faith to ensure that their actions represent their faith in a true light.

    And yes, we do have to have that cup of tea!

  8. Great thoughts here, Christine. One of the greatest tragedies throughout Christianity is what humans have done in the name of God.

    Unfortunately we are all sinners. And we have all fallen short of the glory of God. Which means, no matter how hard we try, we’re still going to screw up quite a bit.

    Often times I think people expect those who are Christian to be 100% perfect. So it then betweens a two-fold issue. 1) Expectations are set extremely high (which isn’t necessarily a bad thing). And 2) Anyone who professes Christianity and makes a mistake is instantly maligned for their actions, which projects negatively on God and His people as a whole.

    The great thing is that God offers forgiveness. And love. We are not in this alone. He knows that we’re going to mess up. But he also knows that these trials and tribulations will strengthen our faith.

    God doesn’t expect you to be perfect. But He does want you to strive for it. The problem is that our imperfections are so apparent, and people are so quick to judge.

    Indeed we are all human, and we are all sinners. And quite frankly, we can’t use God as an excuse. Man is flawed, and we must be quick to acknowledge our shortcomings, and continually work toward improving upon them. The Lord can help us in doing so, but we first recognize our own sin and actually want to change for the better.

    Thanks for the great post. I know this can be tricky ground to tread sometimes😉

  9. @Ryan, Thanks for the great comment! That’s all very true.

    Specifically, what has me most concerned are those who use the name of Christianity for their own selfish interests, harming others and creating a wrong image of God in the process.

    But when it comes to making human mistakes, oh, yes, chalk me up for a bunch of them! Like you said, I’m continually working to improve on them.

  10. Deus est caritas.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: