I’ve been making some observations about the people in our neighboring RV. We’ve been here a few nights and I see them occasionally coming and going.
I told my husband. The woman next door is a traveling nurse. Her husband was a policeman who got injured on the job. She nursed him back to health. They fell in love and got married. He travels with her in the RV as they go from place to place.
My husband was incredulous! Wow, they told you all that? No, I said. I saw her get out of a car around dinner time in scrubs. I saw him riding around the park in a three-wheel motorcycle with a police sticker on it. He had a limp.
We make up stories in our head. Just ask Bene Brown. I’ve read all of her books. In one book she describes a moment when she and her husband are swimming across a lake. She gets angry because he seems to be ignoring her and she thinks it is because she doesn’t look as good in her bathing suit as she once did. This is the story she makes up in her head. He is concentrating on trying to finish the long swim. He was focused on swimming and not her suit.
I am now conscious of the stories I make up. In the past, I would make up stories and tell them to myself so much that I began to believe them. Now I ask myself, is this a story I am making up? Or is this story really true? When the story involves other people, I have learned that I need to ask other people what is going on and not rely on the story I am making up.
We may have made up a story about ourselves and God. We may have made up a story about what God is like. Maybe we have taken an aspect of our image of God from our childhood and carried it into the present that doesn’t reflect what we have learned about God as an adult.
The Bible consists of stories about God in the context of the times and through the lens of the authors. We read them in our own context with our own lens. I have discovered through the classes I took in seminary and through the scholarly commentaries I have read since, that we have to put in the work in order to stay true to the real story.
When we think about our image of God, we can ask ourselves, is this a story I am making up? There are many conflicting views in the Bible which is why it is important to understand the context and the possible author. Thank God we have Jesus who tried to help us understand.
I have embraced one concept for my understanding of God. If it is of love, then it is of God. For in the end there are three things that last faith, hope, and love. And the greatest of these is love.