Blogs Are Stupid

Doesn't anyone believe in Dear Diary anymore? What happened to the joy of putting actual pen to paper? And why does every ordinary Jane and John think they can write well enough to burden the world with their scribblings? It’s a mystery that badly needs solving. My first entry contains my thoughts about blogging and will set your expectations. The rest will probably be stream of consciousness garbage, much like you’ll find on any other blog. Perhaps we will both come away enlightened.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

God is Watching Us

I'm dating myself with this admission, but I love Bette Midler. I thought she was brilliant in "The Rose", and the title track is still one of my favorite songs of all time. So today, while sorting through various and sundry towers of useless, but apparently once very important junk that has managed to amass in my garage, I was thrilled when I came acrross a Bette Midler Greatest Hits CD.

There is simply nothing better than finding unexpected treasure in the midst of a dreary and thankless task. Once, while cleaning vomit from every surface within a 4 foot radius of the toilet in the boys' bathroom, I found a pearl stud I had been missing for years. The CD made me almost as happy.

I gladly left the gloomy insect ridden garage and went in search of the CD player, marvelling that these space aged little disks are now becoming passe, and trying to forget that I was alive for the advent of the cassette tape. I finally found it in the closet of the spare bedroom, covered in paint spatters from our last home improvement project. Stupidly, I felt a moment of pity for this poor outdated piece of technology. I was once cutting edge too.

With nostalgic expectation, I put it in and skipped straight to "The Rose". I was instantly transported back to 1979. I remember singing this song into a coke bottle, tears pouring down my face in the throes of hormonal teenage turmoil. I didn't understand the damn song anymore than anybody else did, but it kicked me in the gut and doubled me over with emotion. Now it takes significantly more wine and significantly less poetry to affect a similar response. Pity. Those crying jags were cathartic if a bit melodramatic. My poor father.

I half listened to the rest of the CD. All good tunes, but not ones that resonated as much with me. Until...."From A Distance".

From a distance, the world looks blue and green
and the snow-capped mountains white.
From a distance the ocean meets the stream
and the eagle takes to flight.
From a distance there is harmony
and it echoes through the land.
It's the voice of hope, it's the voice of peace,
it's the voice of every man.
From a distance, we all have enough
And no one is in need.
There are no guns, no bombs, no diseases,
No hungry mouths to feed.
From a distance we are instruments
Marching in a common band
Playing songs of hope, playing songs of peace
They're the songs of every man.

God is watching us
God is watching us
God is watching us from a distance.

From a distance, you look like my friend
Even though we are at war.
From a distance I cannot comprehend
What all the fighting is for.
From a distance there is harmony
And it echoes through the land.
It's the hope of hopes, it's the love of loves.
It's the heart of every man.

God is watching us
God is watching us
God is watching us from a distance.


Now, to say my religious beliefs are ambiguous would be a huge understatment, and yet, I'm not quite ready to pin a scarlet A to my breast. What if God *is* watching us?

I think he would think that we have royally screwed things up. I think he would be pissed that people are killing one another in his name. I think he would be pissed that people are using religion to justify hatred and deny people the right to love, live and worship how they choose. I think he would sorrowful beyond measure that people calling themselves Christians are perpetrating grave injustices on their fellow man and using their state of grace as a failsafe; like some kind of divine trump card.

And yet...I think he would still find plenty of reasons to rejoice in his creation and celebrate what mankind has wrought. Like...a Bette Midler CD. I think God could groove to some Bette.

Cynicism and Hope make strange bedfellows.

What is my point? Christians would have you believe that even the most righteous man will suffer the fiery torment of hell if he is not saved, but I like to think of God as a fair man. So what I think is...people who are generally good, and kind, and honest and fair, will be cut some slack, while those who spend their time in malignant, petty and destructive pursuits will be roasted over a spit while Satan licks their toes in anticipation.

I am not a theologian, but I am an optimist. Sometimes.

(Dedicated to Christian bloggers who specialize in hellfire and brimstone. Quit telling folks they're going to hell. It's depressing as, well...hell. I won't bother with suggesting repentance since you're already "saved.")

5 Comments:

  • At 2:32 PM, Anonymous Eliza said…

    Good blog today, but then all of your blogs are interesting reading. Insightful, articulate, thought-provoking. As a Christian, I hope you know that not "all" of us are the hellfire and brimstone types. Some of us are more passionate or outspoken about the topic than others, but most of us are fairly normal types who believe, imperfections notwithstanding, in salvation and much more. Keep up the excellent blogs, Antagonist. I look forward to them!

     
  • At 2:53 PM, Blogger Blog Antagonist said…

    You're right. There are some wonderful Christian people out there, and I actually know some. I thank them for their patience with blaspheming heretics like me.

    Thank you for your kind comment. :?)

     
  • At 12:53 PM, Blogger Mom101 said…

    You are so very blogrolled.

     
  • At 2:45 PM, Blogger Blog Antagonist said…

    Why thank you! Its an honor.

     
  • At 4:47 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I thank you for your honesty and for your consideration of this topic. We all have the responsibility to strive and wrestle with these issues.

    But let me throw out a somewhat different perspective. Imagine a doctor who would refuse to tell people that they have cancer because he didn't want to make his patients upset. What would be more loving? For the doctor to hide the truth of the cancer from the patient and avoid the pain that would come from that knowledge or for him to reveal the cancer and begin to treat it? It seems the same way with Christianity. If a Christian truly believes that all people stand as sinners before a completely holy God and that their only hope is in the sacrifice of Christ on their behalf, shouldn't they try to communicate that at every chance? Wouldn't it be less loving of them to make people feel more comfortable and neglect "the elephant in the closet"?

    The main questions we all have to deal with are: is anybody really righteous? (can you look into your heart and honestly say that you're righteous?) and is God really like a "fair man"? Why do you believe God is like a fair man? Is it because this is what you want to believe? Some people equate fairness with justice, and it's this attribute in God that makes sinful humans stand all the more condemned. If God is truly just, He cannot tolerate our sin, and He must punish it. It's exactly His fairness (justice) that requires blood when we break His holy law. That's why the Christian story is so incredible. The coming of the messiah (and more importantly his death) allowed God's justice to be satisfied while it also magnified His mercy and love. But if God went so far as to give up His Son for sinners, how will we stand before him with our sins, if we've rejected that gift?

     

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