Saturday, April 21, 2012

God as benevolent tyrant

IT is soooo hard talking to some kinds of devoted lovers of God, especially those who have been trained by their denominations to see God as a benevolent tyrant who gives them diseases, troubles, afflictions, torments, legal issues, sick children, to test and purify them. Where does one start?

It is sooo hard to try to get them to have creative joyful images of possible futures when their denomination has so trained their minds to accept the evil in their lives. Why? Because they are imagining the problem continuing and they are imagining growing stronger and stronger in denying themselves and in denying the possibility of any kind of good coming in the future.

God created imagination and memory primarily for us to use the mind for good. To imagine good, to remember good. But the human mind uses the imagination to imagine evil, and they often use the memory to remember evil. I'm not talking about imagination that is about people planning on doing evil things in their lives or in other folks lives. I'm talking about people imagining only bad things happening to them and not having the habit of sitting down in their chair and challenging the negative thoughts and the fears coming at them. St Paul says, "We have to cast down evil imaginations. We have to stop being conformed to this world but to be transformed by the renewing of our minds."

Learning to hope and to dream of good things.... to imagine something good and wonderful and joyous will happen to us, to imagine a sweet God who does good for us for our good....and not a God with a kooky idea of "a goodness filled with bad things that is for our good." That's what we have to do. God is benevolent, He's not a tyrant. Let us fast from wrong thinking, from fearful discouraging negative thinking, from insulting God by making him out to be so cruel he gives kids cancer, and he takes away daddies because "God knows best." Folks, we live in a world where rich humans affect our food supply and mess with our foods, where people kill themselves by eating too much or speaking the wrong things about their lives, where the devil roams about seeking whom he may devour. Let's not go blaming God for the bad stuff that happens to us and then call evil good. The Bible says, "woe to those who call evil good and good evil." Let us seek to see the true love of God and stop taking his name in vain by insulting him with our "piety" and "submission to the sorrows of life." Heck, folks, we are not Buddhists. We are not put on earth to submit to evil but to overcome evil with good, with the blood of Jesus who has conquered the world and given us the authority to conquer sin, sickness, poverty and death!

It is the lovingkindness of God that leads us to repentance.
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