Pastor's Blog

A Head Scratching Week Posted 1.09.2014

I have scratched my head a few times this week.  First, I wondered if Canadians scoffed at those on the East Coast as they make such a huge deal about the “polar vortex” migrating south this week.  I mean, those back East scoff at us when we complain about the chill at 50 degrees – so do the Canadians scoff at them when it hits zero?  I asked a Canadian, by the way, and they do laugh at those crazy Americans.


Then I read about this former pastor who is going to live like an atheist for a year. And blog about it.  Really?  He was on the pastoral staff at a Seventh Day Adventist church and the staff of a prominent seminary and on the faculty of a Christian university.  All in SoCal.  But, he has decided not to believe in God for a year and see if life would change.  No more church, Bible study, prayer, whatever takes faith in God.


I scratched my head again and wondered if he was married.  I mean, how would his wife react if just stopped believing in marriage for a year?  It wouldn’t go well, I can assure you.  No one asked what God might think of this little adventure of his.  But God has seen it before and He will stand patiently waiting for this pastor’s return.  But at least the story Jesus told of the Prodigal Son, the Father’s existence was never in doubt. The son just wanted to do his own thing.  Hmmm.  Maybe that’s what’s going on? 


But then I scratched my head one more time and wondered if we – or even God – would notice any difference in our lives if we lived as atheists for a year.  We (and He!) would notice if tragedy struck, but what about in the daily-ness of life?  Do we who believe in God and live like an atheist?


That is the challenge for the year ahead:  to let God so invade our space so that life is unique on this planet.  God can impact the way we speak.  The way we respond to our spouse.  The way we treat our kids.  He gives joy or peace or patience.  But we often act as if there is no God and do not see the fruit of the Spirit’s life in us.  Then what good is our belief in God?  We aren’t any better than this confused pastor.


I think of Isaiah and his illustration of the potter with the clay. Who are we to tell God He does not exist, just because we don’t understand everything about Him?  How presumptuous.  How arrogant.  I want to see God so active that we shout, “Our God lives.”  Our whole being depends on Him.  Do not diminish His glory for any intellectual gymnastics.


There is a God.  He rules the earth – even in the midst of a “polar vortex” and the howls of our complaints.  I should scratch my head next over my disobedience, but never God’s existence.

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