By: Carolyn Gard
“…making your ear attentive to wisdom and inclining your heart to understanding; yes, if you cry out for insight and raise your voice for understanding…then you will…find the knowledge of God.” Proverbs 2:2-5.
When I was a kid I loved to shuffle through the leaves on my way to and from school. As an adult, I still like to do it. Unfortunately, along came leaf blowers, and leaves had to go. Off the lawns, off the sidewalks, off the driveways, even off the streets. No more shuffling. A few weeks ago, we had a snowstorm that caused most of the trees to lose their leaves. Leaves covered the ground, too many leaves to blow away. And so I got to shuffle again.
I came up with an analogy. Fundamental religions want to blow away messy issues like immigration, abortion, and gay marriage. Keep the ‘lawn’ clear by taking Bible verses out of context, and then you won’t have to think about these issues or challenge your beliefs.
By contrast, churches such as First Congregational plunge right into this pile of leaves. We consider the issues, talk about them, debate them, and challenge our beliefs. Often the result is that we come out with a messy ‘lawn.’ While we acknowledge that we don’t have the answers, we also acknowledge that we are searching for those answers.
I know that I’m happier with the folks at FCC who shuffle through these ‘leaves’ as they keep searching for God’s will than I would be with those who sweep their minds of anything the least bit controversial and are convinced that they know the answers.
Oh, and if you’re ever looking for my house, it’s the one with the lawn covered with leaves!
God, guide us in our ‘shuffling,’ and remind us always to be seekers of truth.