Are “The Promises” REALLY Promises?
I was thinking over "my will or his will", as I was asked which of these I'm really wanting. The question was a good one for me, I've thought it over before, in different times and circumstances, but not for a long time.
I had to really check myself for a while.
I think I can accept his.
I know there is a Creator, and that he is Good and that he is Truth, and even though I don't know him like I thought I did, I'm good with letting him have control. I don't know best.
But what I'm NOT good with is being told authoritatively what his will is when people really can't do that.
I started thinking about when Jesus was here, the Word become Flesh.
The sick, the lame, the demon possessed, the blind…
Zoom in on just the blind for a minute. Even just there, in healing the very same malady, he didn't even do it the same way each time. Sometimes he just spoke. Sometimes he touched the person. Sometimes he needed to do it twice. Sometimes he made mud with spit…
We skim over the parts of the story that mention him walking away from the multitudes before they were all healed. I think we really don't like thinking about that part.
It seems that "churchianity" likes to find an example of something happening in the Bible, and say that God will always do that, and do it that way.
It's very comforting to have a tame, predictable god.
But I don't think it's True. I think even just the small example of Jesus healing (or not!) the blind shows that.
I believe the things that (according to the records available) Jesus himself said.
He said the scripture prophesying"THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD IS UPON ME, BECAUSE HE ANOINTED ME TO PREACH THE GOSPEL TO THE POOR. HE HAS SENT ME TO PROCLAIM RELEASE TO THE CAPTIVES, AND RECOVERY OF SIGHT TO THE BLIND, TO SET FREE THOSE WHO ARE OPPRESSED, TO PROCLAIM THE FAVORABLE YEAR OF THE LORD." was fulfilled in him.
He showed that he desires the healing of those who need it.
He showed that he CAN heal.
I think we tend to run with that and say that he's GOING to heal.
I think we look at the things like Psalm 18, and say that since it was God's will that time, for that person, to do it that way, then obviously it's a promise that that's what he will do everytime, for everyone.
And I'm finding that's just not true, and I'm seeing firsthand the hurt and the damage that comes when we go beyond what God has said and make promises for him that he didn't make.
It reminds me of Uzzah, really.
And it makes me angry, to see people in the wake, left to hurt while the institution clicks on.
I don't want to come off as self-righteous, like I have the "right way", and I know how we should all be doing things. I have for way too long been an enthusiastic participator and promoter of "churchianity". My reproach is entirely self-inclusive.
But as I see the ugly, I call it ugly, and I step away.
A dear friend shared this with me, in reading Ben-Hur, it stood out to her:
"the way Jesus' followers completely failed to understand how God was fulfilling his promises through Jesus. They THOUGHT they knew what they needed – freedom from Rome. One of the wise men was watching the excitement over Jesus, and said to Ben Hur – 'Governments come and go. One inevitably replaces another over the passage of time. If Jesus came only to give the Jews freedom from Rome, I would be terribly disappointed. I think he came to do something far greater.'"
I see myself and others in the position of Jesus' followers described here, and I'm frustrated with ALL of it. I'm frustrated with the "pattern" held out by most of the church-society/culture, it seems to me to be so far away from even resembling anything besides what provoked Jesus' ire, and I'm frustrated with my own position of (apparently) feeling that I know better, which is just ugly.
I definitely have a LOT of questions right now. I'm OK with that, because I do want Truth, and I believe that if I seek I will find. I'm actually excited about the seeking and the finding. I'm excited about Truth, whatever it is. I'm done with being afraid it won't fit the comfortable box I have all prepared for it, and not seeking it because of that fear.
I am definitely taking the walk away from the "package" I bought years ago, but not from God. The way I phrase it is that "I've left Christianity to seek Jesus."