Monday, August 27, 2007


I often wake up praying. I don’t know if it’s my fretful, fearful self trying to get one up on the prickly situations of the day ahead, or if it is my spiritual self, asserting positive energy and control. I’m afraid it’s more of the former.

This morning, I was praying for my 10 y.o. as she begins a new week at school. “…illuminate her golden spirit, allowing her true beauty to shine through and envelop those around her.” I spoke those words aloud as my eyelids hoisted themselves open.

Clearly my unconscious, spiritual self is an avid reader of late 19th century poetry. What does that mean, “illuminate her golden spirit…?” The absurd, Dickinsonian prayer ended abruptly as the cogs in my conscious mind began to whir and spin. “Just let her have a good day at school, today. And for all of the kids who make fun of her knobby knees, please curse them with acne and halitosis. Amen.”

More than one person, lately, has challenged my spirituality, causing me to make eye contact with what I believe. And I’ve come to the conclusion that I need to do this on a more regular basis. Too often, I walk through my life somewhat unconscious…rote. There are candidates I’m supposed to support as a Republican; assignments I have to complete because I am a mother; opinions I’m supposed to hold because I am a Christian…

But I don’t live in the pastel Precious Moments world where the sharp edges of life are porcelain bisque and all of its messiness can be summed up in a clever, inspirational quote.

I disagree with the Republican Party, right now: Health care is no kind of care at all. Kids are falling through the cracks. The war is a mess and doesn’t seem to be accomplishing what was set out to do. I don’t know that Democrats would do “better”, but I’m willing to try “different.”

Motherhood is an ever present and odd feathered hat, I wear. I love my girls immeasurably. I want them to be free but obedient, to take artistic license but follow directions, to enjoy their every whim but be acquainted with disappointment so that its not such a lumbering sparring partner when they are 30, to be respectful but to question authority, to be boisterously happy and quietly reflective, to suck the marrow from life but know when to let things go…

Eyeballing my Christianity has been the most enlightening. I have decided one thing for sure: God is God and I am not, (and I might add for the rest of you, Thank Goodness!) I often get in His way. I think a lot of Christians do, especially those “in charge.” I think God wants us to shut up and love people, instead of strong arming them into following our rules. I will support same sex marriage with my vote, because I think that’s what God lined out for us to do…to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, shelter the weary, essentially take care of each other. I’m afraid that denying anyone basic civil liberties is in contrast with the way God loves people. We, as Christians, are incorrectly portraying God as someone who ostracizes and exiles sections of society when the truth is that He embraces them, and we are massaging our homophobia by legislating homosexuals into a more comfortable corner for us…in the name of God. And, truth be told, if I had the right to decide who would be a fit parent/uphold the sanctity of marriage, there are plenty of heterosexuals who would be in the strike zone.


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painted maypole said...

wow, now that's a lot to cover in one post. :) Thanks for stopping by my post, and I have a feeling I'm going to enjoy yours. And I try to be God a little too often, myself. Do I really think I could do it better? Well, I can think of a few people I would smite. But then I ask for forgiveness.

Hannah said...

"I’m afraid that denying anyone basic civil liberties is in contrast with the way God loves people."

Thank you. And amen to that.

Kevin said...

I have always noticed that the most "un-Christian" folks seem to be the ones who always feel the need to tell you how "Christian" they are.

Having gone to parochial schools for most of my life and having read all the gospels, etc., there is a serious disconnect between those folks and Jesus' teachings. I think that is why you seem them relying on lots of the epistles and the Old Testament. You can justify just about any position by selectively choosing portions of the Bible.

Nice post.