Monday, February 9, 2009
Two things were said to me yesterday that I just can't get out of my mind.
The first was by the minister at church. (Yep, I went to church all on my own.) I think I really like this guy. He's new at our church and is only 40 years old. He's quite fresh and different from the view of religion that I grew up with. To sum up his sermon, he pretty much told us to have a heart and not get too big for our breeches, because none of us are perfect, even if we obey all the so-called rules and think we're walking the straight and narrow. He told us not to get too caught up in making sure everyone obeys the rules and ignoring what's in a person's heart.
He said, "Worship of the rules is what makes someone fly an airplane into a building in order to kill thousands of people. Worship of the rules is what makes someone take a gun and blow away a doctor because he performs abortions that don't agree with the rules."
He told us to follow "the rules" if we think that's what we need to do, but it's what's in our hearts that is the most important thing and what matters in the end.
It kind of rocked my world to hear a Baptist minister say what's been in my own mind about religion all these years. My little church has changed.
Then later after Sunday dinner, my father, who doesn't speak just for the sake of speaking and usually keeps quiet until he has something definitive to say, said something that made the whole table go quiet.
My sister, niece, and I had been talking about politics and the current state of the United States. After a few minutes of us ranting and voicing our outrage, my 83 year old father said that based on what he'd seen the last forty or fifty years, and how much the direction of the nation had changed in that time, that he was glad he wouldn't be alive to see it when we (my sister, niece, and me) get to be his age. But he said that he sure did worry for us, and that thinking of how we might be living by then kept him awake some nights.
That makes me sad. My father is the most decent, hardworking, and honest man I've ever known, and I can't stand the thought of him not sleeping restfully, peacefully, and happily at night. He's earned it. But he's also one of the wisest men I know, and I value his judgment. So his words haven't left my mind. And they've scared me a bit.
Posted by Chatelaine at 7:30 PM