God — Too Darned Good to Be True?

rock at joshua tree national monument. Photo by BF Newhall

Joshua Tree National Monument

By Barbara Falconer Newhall

For most of my adult life I wasn’t so sure about God. That such a thing could exist seemed far-fetched, too good to be true.

But now that I’m firmly located in the second half of my life – okay, okay, the third third
of my life (And no, I’m not calling it the last third of my life – I’m not ready to go there – yet) . . . now that I’ve moved along in my life, past the time when I have to make my mark on the world, produce those babies, get them raised to adulthood, achieve some success and glory as a writer, stash away some money for retirement . . . now that the gotta-do part of my life is behind me – I find that God’s existence is right there for all to see.

You can’t miss it. Something is going on out there. Of course it is. It’s common sense. How else could things be?

Isaiah appears to share my sense of the of-courseness of God:

“Have you not known? Have you not heard?

Has it not been told you from the beginning?

Have you not understood from the foundations of the earth?

It is he who sits above the circle of the earth,

and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers;

who stretches out the heavens like a curtain,

and spreads them like a tent to live in . . . ”   – Isaiah 40:21-22

The aspect of God that I’m still not so sure about – yet – is the immanent, ever-present, caring God, the one “who brings out their host and numbers them, calling them all by name.” The one who answers prayers. The one who, in Mark 1:31, takes Simon’s mother-in-law by the hand and lifts her up.

But maybe one day the immanent, caring God who knows our names will feel as obvious to me as the foundational Creator God who upholds the world and keeps things from falling apart. And maybe that will be the same day I’m ready to concede that, indeed, I have reached the last third of my life.

LECTIONARY, Epiphany 5

Isaiah 40:21-31

Psalm 147:1-12, 21c

1 Corinthians 9:16-23

Mark 1:29-39 

“Jesus left the synagogue at Capernaum, and entered the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John. Now Simon’s mother-in-law was in bed with a fever, and they told him about her at once. He came and took her by the hand and lifted her up. Then the fever left her, and she began to serve them.”  — Mark 1:29-31

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© 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 Barbara Falconer Newhall. and www.GodsBigBlog.com. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without expressed and written permission from this blog's author is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used provided that full and clear credit is given to Barbara Falconer Newhall and www.GodBigBlog.com with appropriate and specifc direction to the original content. Bible texts are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Church of Christ in the USA. The Psalms are from the Book of Common Prayer, 1979. Material originally published and copyrighted by the Oakland Tribune is posted here by permission. WordPress theme adapted from Thematic Theme Framework