Primitive religion is not believed, it is danced!

Arthur Darby Nock

Earth's crammed with heaven,
And every common bush afire with God;
And only he who sees takes off his shoes;
The rest sit round it and pluck blackberries.

Elizabeth Browning

Thursday, June 4, 2020

I believe, help my unbelief

The "unforgivable sin" isn’t saying the Holy Spirit doesn’t exist, the unforgivable sin is believing that there is no power to the holy–meaning, it’s believing that you are not redeemable, or that someone else is not redeemable.

But if people can’t change, if we are so cynical as to think human transformation is not possible, then what the fuck are we up to?

I believe in redemption but not because I am naïve, I believe in redemption because I am desperate for it myself.
                                                   Nadia Bolz-Weber

Do you believe!?
I mean really, do you believe?

It is a question I have been asking myself

Do I believe God is engaged with this world?
Do I believe God works in his people?
Do I believe God can change people?
Do I believe God can change me?
Do I believe God can change Donald Trump?

It’s a legitimate question
Not just whether we believe
But what we believe

Because it changes so much

It changes how we pray
Do we pray that God deal with those who perpetuate evil,
do we pray that those who are so careless with the lives of others,
experience the consequences of their actions….


do we pray that God change those people’s hearts?

In short, do we pray at all?
Do we prayer retribution?
Or do we prayer grace?

I have been fighting today with my darker angels
Fighting the urge to wish people ill
Wanting to raise my voice to heaven
Asking that God do a little smiting

But if that is the best I can do, I have a faith problem

I remember, of course
that at least once Jesus asked a man
“do you want to get well”?

Which reminds me that people can indeed block
the healing power of the Sacred
we can, personally, all by ourselves
deny the Spirit

But I remember too what Jesus did with
those others saw as unredeemable
the woman caught in adultery
the Roman centurion
the tax collector
the lepers

I remember what the Spirit did with Saul
who became Paul

that crass, brutal, murderous person
so wrapped up in law
and his own version of righteousness



so this day I am shoved, kicking and screaming toward belief
in the power of the holy
in the power of the holy to redeem and transform

so this day I am driven to pray

God forgive me, shape me, mold me
save me from the snares which have captured me
even the snares of my own making
restore in me the divine image
restore in me the joy of my salvation

and God

forgive them too
rescue them from the snares which have captured them
even the snares of their own making

restore those I don’t think can be restored
even those (if I am honest) I don’t want to be restored

Lord I believe, help my unbelief (Mark 9)

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