|God's energy is present in our lives|
|Written by BILL RYAN Sentinel Religion Editor|
|Friday, 24 February 2012 10:14|
(With the start of the Lenten season, the Sentinel's religion editor begins a series entitled "Life With God's Energy." Over the course of the series, he will examine a wide variety of aspects of God's use of energy throughout the Bible and in our daily lives.)
What is your image of God?
People of all faith beliefs, even many who deny God's existence, have some concept of God.
Some likenesses come from holy books such as the Bible. Other visions have been created from the words of religious leaders or churches.
For some people, their idea of God has been formed through what they have seen portrayed in movies as well as in classic works of art.
It is a distinct possibility each of these depictions may be accurate but at the same time totally insufficient and incomplete. Our God, our loving God cannot be contained in a picture frame.
When the Bible was written, there had been no human exploration beyond the clouds. Literal readers of the Bible and many people yet today have the belief of God somewhere up there in a physical realm.
Modern technology has taken humanity far beyond the clouds, and there has been no finding of a visible heaven nor God beyond those clouds. But I believe God is there.
God cannot be simply captured as some powerful figure above the clouds orchestrating all things at all times. A judgmental God ruling from a throne and deciding who is admitted to heaven or condemned to hell is not an idea of God that works for me. That concept is more like Santa Claus deciding who is naughty or nice, and certainly not a complete picture of God.
God is above the clouds as surely as God is here on Earth, God is all around us, and for many believers, including this writer, God is within each of us.
Most translations of the Bible use male pronouns to describe God, but female pronouns are also used. Therefore, no single image of God is complete as God indeed carries all traits. God is ever present in all creation, and God is most present in love.
The feelings of love are hard to explain, but humans know - we all know the joy, the warmth, the light of love. But what is your image of love?
It is the same question as the one regarding God. There is not one answer nor icon which embraces all aspects of love. Similarly, all aspects, all images of our God cannot be captured in one view.
One aspect of love is the way it makes us feel; we know there is love because of those experiences. Believers know there is God because God has been revealed throughout our lives. In small ways of everyday life, and in large life-changing experiences, God is there.
There are numerous aspects of love including romantic, parental, brotherly and/or sisterly, as well as fraternal love of others and love of life. Each type of love is very real, yet distinctively different. God is much the same. God is all things at all times. God is different for each person and in various faith traditions. And our Creator is altered in our mind's eye at different times in our lives.
God loves us as children, far beyond an earthly parent's love.
So if God cannot be captured in a simple icon, why do humans make the attempt? By giving a physical appearance to God, it helps to attempt identify, objectify and capture something that cannot be captured - God's appearance.
The Bible teaches in Genesis we are made in God's image, but that does not necessarily mean God looks like us.
There are so many aspects of God humans cannot possibly conceive. How much thought have you given to the energy of God?
St. Catherine of Siena once said, "If you are what you should be, you will set the whole world on fire!"
Truly this saint of the church understood the potential within each of us to live our lives using God's energy to give notice to the world.
We have the power within us, because of God's power, to change the world, at the very least, our small corner of it.
Power is displayed in many ways and various forms of energy. God is thus revealed to us in bits and pieces through energy, a force which cannot be captured in any picture.
God is beyond human comprehension or description, God is all-powerful. Despite our limitations, God is very close, very near and very much a part of our lives.
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