Tuesday, September 21, 2004

A Bit of a Ramble About Religion

Found it! A while back I read this post on So Close, a blog by a woman struggling with infertility. It articulated many of the problems I have with God "answering" prayers. I always wonder why God seems to answer the prayers of track and field winners, and not those of people sitting by the bedside of dying babies.

My BIL died almost 20 years ago in a helicopter accident. They found the body of one of the helicopter's workers, but they never found his or his co-pilot's body, so there was a about a week period there where no one knew if he was dead or alive. Lots of prayers around that one, and they still never found him. At the time, I was living in the dorms at college, and a woman in my building was trying to recruit me into the Church of Christ. I asked her what she thought about why God would have let this happen to a man with a wife and a 9-year-old daughter. She suggested that maybe he was trying to "bring someone closer to Jesus." Hmmm. If that's true, the problem is, I don't think it worked. So shouldn't God have known that it wouldn't work? What did he say? "Well, shoot, thought that would work but that group's as heathen as ever. Guess I'll just have to go kill someone else." I don't know - but I don't think so.

There's a story that's often used to prove the existence of angels. As I remember it, there was a woman walking home in NYC and just as she got to her building, she felt a hand on her shoulder and a voice saying, "keep going." So she rounded the block and by the time she got back, there was all this police action at the building. Apparently a woman had been murdered in the elevator a few minutes prior. The idea was that an angel saved the first woman from death. But whenever I heard this story in Catholic school, I always wondered what kind of slacker guardian angel had been assigned to the murder victim.

The thing is, when I'm really depressed, I need to believe that God is there helping me hang on, somehow. I don't ask for Him to lift me out of it. But I do ask for strength and faith. And an open heart. Honestly, I don't think he hands it down with an "OK, just waiting for you to ask!" I think he's already put it in me and my prayers just remind my soul that it's still there. Know what I mean? What do you think?


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