Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Socks II

You’re not going to believe this. I can hardly believe it myself, and I was there to see it happen.

Of two loads of laundry I did yesterday, both containing socks, I folded and put away complete pairs of socks. No extras! No mis-matches! I must be living right!

I promise I was no more careful than usual in sorting laundry and throwing it in the washer. I didn’t carefully count out socks, match them, attach them, then wash them. I sorted laundry and washed it, just like I always do. I really must be living right!

I don’t really expect you to buy that the way I am living has anything to do with whether or not socks pair up coming out of the dryer. Yet, am I the only one who sometimes feels like the world does indeed work that way?

At least since Newton’s theory of the way the universe works we have tended to understand even God’s involvement in a somewhat mechanical way. For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. Thus, my socks matching up must have been a reaction to something, right?

In the days of scripture such a mechanical understanding of the way the world works was prominent among pagans, not among God’s people. One of the radical differences between the God of Israel and other gods of the times was that our God did not have a mechanical, and thus manipulative, interaction with the world.

Rather, our God had, and was interested in deepening, an actual personal relationship with God’s people. The God who created the world and each of us invites us to know Him, speak to Him, listen to Him. God is not interested in manipulating our lives.

God no more matched my socks this time than He unmatched them last time. Such things happen. Whether my socks match up coming out of the dryer or none, God still loves me; and for this I am grateful


At 5:39 AM, Blogger ~NAM said...

I don't think God cares as much that our socks might come out unmatched as how we react to it...


At 8:38 AM, Blogger Steve Heyduck said...

I completely agree! But why is our culture, or at least the Christians in our culture, SO preoccupied with the idea that God micro-manages everything?

At 10:47 AM, Blogger ~NAM said...

Isn't everything centered on "me"? Why wouldn't God want to bless/persecute/personally guide me? As part of our faith, we certainly believe God has the ultimate power and ability to do that.

Part of our self-centered nature causes us to think, if you have power, you use it. After all, isn't the media used in large part to micro-manage the actions of others, even though we may base that on sound bites rather than seeing bigger picture? I believe we tend to extend that to how we think God thinks.

BTW, when will God bless me and stop orphaning my socks on wash day?



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