Friday, November 25, 2011

Pillar of Salt -- Some Unfiltered Thoughts on God

I am looking out the window at my work as the sun rises. I can't see the sun but can only see it's light hitting the golf course just out side. I feel like, although I've worked here for a year and a half, I have never look like it does now. To the north, up near where I live there are grey clouds. All low to the ground. The orange sun reflects and lightens a tree near the window and the back drop of grey is breath-taking. There are buildings of red brick that shine with such a deep orange I feel like I've never seen them before. And maybe I haven't. Maybe there are a lot of things I haven't seen before.

I wonder often who God is. What is his relationship to us? Does he laugh at me when I do something dumb like not un-clipping my bike pedals and fall in the driveway as I try to step off my clipless pedals? It's funny to me. Does he sometimes look at sunrises, sunrises that he has seen over and over all throughout this universe and still, sometimes, look at it with such new eyes? Or is he beyond that? Is God jaded? After seeing super novae, and blackholes a simple sunset couldn't be as beautiful or awe inspiring? What is it that keeps him going? Is it learning? Growing? Us? I have a hard time believing that it would be us.

 Love is strong, I work two jobs (one full time) and go to school full time for my family whom I love. I love them more than anything. But does that mean that I am happy at work? I would gladly quit and go to school full-er time, if I could. But I can't. Does God sometimes, when seeing the pain in the world feel such sorrow that he wishes he could leave?

Who is God that he should magnify man?

I've grown beyond questioning these things. I feel one thing, I feel that he is a father figure to me. It's hard to be close to him like I am to my own Dad, but still, I can feel that it is there. I can feel that he cares for me and have felt it deep within me in times when I've asked or have needed to hear it. But who is he? Who am I to him? Am I one of billions? of trillions? How could i be special with a daunting number as that? What could make me special? All I am in all this vastness of eternity is a speck on a pale blue dot.

I named this blog for these reasons. Perhaps it was because at the time, over a year ago, I wan't too comfortable with questioning the very nature of God. I compared my self to Lots wife, looking back to that place where all their friends and possessions were and doubted or questioned for only a second. There are somethings that I questions that I don't think there is an answer to. There can't be, because we are all different and I can't believe there is only one road to God. I can't believe the straight and narrow is only one direction in which we line up one by one and walk. It must be different. God is a father and will do all he can to help us and be with us.

I think this is a secret beyond so many others. God needs us. And God wants us to be with him. I think we're lucky. I think we are luckier than we could ever know. And I think there are some among us (maybe me) that take advantage of what luck we feel we understand. Or maybe we disregard this, telling our selves that we need to follow the letter of the law to exactness. That leaders of the church are never wrong and that all answers to life are found in the scriptures. I think we can understand God through the leaders and scriptures. But I think we need to look outward.

I think God still, occasionally, see's a sunset or sunrise and smiles. I think he, like us, needs something simple like that to remind him of some kind of beauty. Some type of beginning or ending. I think that if he saw me fall in my drive way he laughed. He laughed that I forgot to do something so simple and routine as un-clipping my shoes.  He laughed at my shock or surprise. And he laughed at me while I too laughed at me.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


Why is it that people make mistakes?  In my life I have done so many things I regret. Many I have not admitted for shame and fear. I watched, because of anger at the mission, the fourth Harry Potter with my companion, on my mission. It may not seem like a big thing now, and admittedly, it isn't. But while on my mission I felt a great sense of shame because of that one simple thing. When I was eight or nine my brother and I made fires in the woods, threw trash in rivers and broke windows, all mistakes, all because we were being children and were trying to figure things out. I've lied to my parents and friends, needlessly grown upset at my wife and kids, and crashed my parents van. I once stole a crystal-like thing while in elementary school and sense then have never stolen again. And through these experiences and many other like them I have learned something on what it means to be human. 

I don't write these things as some form of penance, but merely because I feel that most everyone is going to have the same experiences. People grow and learn and mistakes push us to learn in ways uncomfortable, but most likely are the most effective. I feel as is a mistake can be categorized more along the lines of repeated folly rather than one accident.  How is it that we so willfully are blind to our reactions to others? There are times when I am upset with my wife, or am struggling with my kids not wanting to go to bed when something carnal in me wants out. I think it is this was for everyone and part of being human is learning to overcome those things. To overcome those urges and grow from them. When they succeed in escaping my soul, my humanity can feel it. Like some creeping thing worming its way to my skin. Why do I let this happen?

Maybe that is another part of being humane, or rather, being ethical, moral. Seeing the worse we can become, having even a small taste and coming away from it a whole, and still good, person. You see a version of yourself, something ancient, something easy and still choose the higher road.

In this we should be proud of our mistakes. Take joy that it is a mistake and that we have come back from it to recognize it as such. We are beings of mistakes. They build and enlighten us as long as we allow them to. Never forget this.

I love my kids and my wife and family and friends. They are important to me. I think of things I've done and still, years and years later I regret them. I drug my little brother, Nate, out of my room where me and some friends (his included) were hanging out. It was my room and I didn't want him in there. Why? I don't know. I may never know. But I did it. I have felt so sorry for that, but through it, and others, I have learned to be more loving and patient and accepting of others. Once, through excitement I grabbed my wife in a bear hug, while she was pregnant, and lifted her off the ground. I cannot express the sorrow I felt in being so careless as to jeopardize the health of that 7 month embryo. I still regret it. 

I am still unsure as to why I am admitting these things. Maybe it is to prove a point. Most of you reading this know my, and most of you have probably not known about most of these. (Maybe except the fire one, that ones pretty popular). I am a man of mistakes, but through them I have not become a bad person, or an immoral man. I feel that I am a pretty good person, trying my hardest to overcome any hard things, (mistakes or challenges), and trying to find joy in life that is worth celebrating and remembering. Nate and I are close. Extremely close. The same goes for all of my family. We all get along all the time. I've seen many families that don't but we are not one of them. I love my kids and I do everything I can for them. I am patient and loving towards my wife. I love her and will always love her. I do not steal, I help others, strangers, when I can, and I do not catch forests of fire. These and many other things are a result of  my mistakes. 

Take joy in them--in over coming them--I am trying.