Monday, May 25, 2009

The Lilies

Tonight, I watched the recent sci-fi thriller "The Day the Earth Stood Still" staring the ever stoic Keanu Reeves and Jennifer Connolly. The film is about an alien who comes to earth to save it, and by doing so must wipe out the human race. It's basically a modern telling of the Noah story. Even the animals are taken away to preserve them.

You might have seen the previews where there is a cloud of something that is dissolving everything in site. Tanks, buildings, semi trucks, and people are gone after this cloud passes over them. I found myself rooting for the cloud, and in the end, was hoping for a not so happy ending. I won't tell you if I got that ending or not. You will have to see it for yourself.

I found it curious as to why I was wanting the cloud to win, as though we as humans deserve complete destruction. We deserve to be wiped off of the face of this planet. I see what we have created around us that we call life, and how it consumes our every thought and activity. I will work most of my life so that I can have a house, drive a car, talk on my IPhone, and type on this fricken computer, which I do far too much as it is. I look at my life and sincerely long for something more simplistic.

Looking at scripture, Jesus asks us to consider the lilies of the field and the birds of the air. They need not worry because God has already provided that which they need to survive. It makes me wonder if we as a human race have built so many comforts and conveniences around us that we will never be able to live our lives like that. I mean, did God really create us to sit in traffic? Did He create us to pay a mortgage? Did He create us to achieve the American dream? Or all of these things a giant distraction which will eventually lead to our demise?

I chuckle nervously as I write this post. I saw Terminator 4 this weekend, which of course is also about man's annihilation because of what we have created. As I read over Genesis, I have to ask myself the question of just what was so bad that God had to flood the Earth? How did they get to the point to where there was no other family on the planet that knew God other than Noah and his family? With the decline in Christianity here in the west, how much time will have to pass when, if staying on our current path, we are in the exact same spot, and there are no believers left?

I don't think that this will happen, and there are plenty who can get their theological Ginsu knives and cut that doctrine to shreds, but even with those guys, who spend their entire lives educating themselves of the nature of God, how is that being the lilies of the fields or the birds of the air, and of course there are many believers who are distracted by theology just like I am distracted by Twitter, my four year old, and the 24 season finale. We all have these man created systems around us that keep us from being that which God created us to be, and I know that this is so prevalent in my life, and all I want is for the cloud to come and take it away, so that maybe I can see clearly that I am God's beloved, He has a plan and purpose for my life and my family and friends, and all the rest is pure bull shit.

Now I am concerned what people will think because I used the word shit. Who am I kidding. No one reads this anyways. Anyways, back to the topic. Monthly, the place where I live cost me roughly 1/3 of my income. In other words, since I work about 16o hours in a month, I spend 50 hours a month making money to have a house. That's about 1 and a half hours a day. Do I spend that with God....and I wonder why I can be like the lilies. Obviously my house is more important. In fact, as far as my time is concerned, the only thing that I would say is more important than my house is my television, because you can bet that I spend more than 1 and a half hours a day watching that. The other thing would be my family. I will typically spend more time that that a day with them.

So what does that say about me as a person? It says that my house and my television are more important to me than my relationship with God. I mean, let's face it. Even if I get 40 minutes in the car to pray and mediate on God, it still doesn't come close to the amount of time that I spend on the house, and in reality, my heart is longing, dieing, crying out to know God more, and could care less about this house, but my mind and my flesh continues to buy into the lie that these things are important. I simply cannot be a Lily. I can't be a Lily, a father, an employee, a husband, and a son.

One of the points of the movies is that the Aliens had to come because the people were unwilling to change. The point is made that it is only on the precipice, at the point of total destruction, do a group of people truly change. That is why I have seen heroine addicted drug addicts miraculously turn their lives around on a dime. I have also seen some destroy themselves, but I am not now, nor ever have been at that point. Sure I have had some really difficult times, but my complete and total destruction wasn't the result unless I changed course. During the difficult times, God is so clear, like the morning after a huge thunderstorm, but it is only a matter of time until the distraction come back, because I didn't really change. I was just desperate for God and because He loves me, He was there for me. I have to ask myself the question though. Will it take my immanent destruction for me to truly change, because I can tell you this. I don't know of anyone who has willed that to happen; who one day woke up and said I am going to change today. In every case, there has always been their immanent demise, whether it was losing 300 pounds for Oprah or realizing that you need to diet and exercise because you had a heat attack.

That is not to say that instances like that don't exist, but everyone that I have known for some time are pretty much the same as the day that I met them, especially other believers. Some are more predisposed to ideological shifts, but not in a way which radically removes every obstacle that keeps them from having a full relationship with God. Those who had a vibrant relationship with God still do. Those who were faking it still are. Those who didn't want to have anything to do with God still don't for the most part, and it is only those whom I have seen come to know Christ who have been transformed and are radically different. Either that, or they reached a moment in their lives of destruction, and God had to piece their lives back together. I long for that destruction, because without it, my life is just like that of so many believers whose relationship with God is merely something that they make time for. It isn't something that drives their daily existence.

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