Wednesday, March 27, 2024

Misguided Faith

Still, when we think about superstition, it strikes us as It's something to believe in, and if we're Christians and have "Christian"-sounding superstitions, it's easy to convince ourselves that we're really just trying to get faith "right." We're trying to believe the right things in the right ways. We're trying to honor God. 

So...we're Pharisees. 

That's really what it amounts to. It all boils down to the fact that we are trying to demonstrate our faith in the smallest of all details by keeping to the very letter of everything. We're trying to demonstrate that we, alone, "get it" and that our lives, which are full of all of the good things by very nature of our "getting it" are the evidence that all things are well. 

We have put our faith in our ability to keep the faith, and in doing so, we have lost faith in anything and everything at all. That is, we no longer believe in God; we believe in ourselves. 

And that spirals down into something else entirely: we believe that we can control God. 

We believe that by doing the right things, we get the right outcome. We believe that by not breaking mirrors or walking under ladders or crossing paths with cats (or whatever Christian language we want to put on all of this), we live in God's favor and He doesn't have a choice but to bless us. 

We're in, whether He likes it or not. 

Because we've done all of the right things in the right ways. 

Do you see how quickly this takes us away from faith? 

All of a sudden, we are in the good graces of God not because He is good, but because we are. Not because He loves us, but because we are forcing Him to be good to us. Not because His ways are right, but because we are right. And now, our "faith" is no longer God loving us or even us loving Him, but us controlling Him....or so we think.

But here's what we have to remember - God cannot be controlled. 

God's blessings cannot be controlled. God's goodness cannot be controlled. God's love for us cannot be controlled. There is no crack in the sidewalk that we can either step on or avoid that changes one ounce of God's love for us, that changes anything at all about the relationship we share...except perhaps to damage it by drawing us further away from real connection. 

The very moment that we are most certain that we have God wrapped around our finger is the moment that we could not be further away from Him if we tried. 

So let us put away our superstitions - even our so-called "Christian" superstitions - and simply soak in the knowledge that God really is good and He really does love us. 

Plain as that. 

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