Never Certain

“We unknowingly live out this resistance to being known in much of our lives, not the least of which is in our religious practice, as demonstrated by our obsession with knowing and believing the right things about God, about Jesus, about our theology, and about ‘right behavior.’ This imbalanced way of being is often a defense against our feelings of insecurity and shame. …

We delude ourselves into thinking that we know God, but God as we believe him to be – in control and invulnerable – not God as Scripture describes him to be: risk-taking and able to be hurt badly. We no longer have to trust since we’ve got him all figured out.” Curt Thompson, M.D. from Anatomy of the Soul

I thought I did nothing.
I smiled when needed
Or kept myself pleasant.

I thought it was helping.
They said every sign shows
This goodness would win.

I thought I was equal.
I say what they say
And they make me their own.

But I must leave this church of lies;
the one that wants a bridge
to insecurity and shame.

Their god is sure.
He doesn’t know me and
And he can’t be badly hurt.

This church told me,
“You aren’t God.
You are weak.”

I bore the shame
and said I’m weak
Before the predator.

But what they meant was
That I was too weak
And I could not prey with them.

But I ache for love.

The love that didn’t need my agreeable smile.

The love that says my image is theirs.

The love that sought wholeness by my hurting it.

I think I am unequal;
uniquely separate from wholeness.

I think I am helped
By the signs of goodness.

I think I do something.
I smile when needed.

I was motivated to write this poem based on a quote from a book by Curt Thompson, MD that was used in a class at Wesley Seminary last semester.  I appreciate his insight in revealing to me this image of God.

Photo at Vatican Museum, Rome, Italy

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