‘God Idea’

Terry Walton


I Was Thinking…

Have you ever run across someone that you thought was a ‘control freak’?  I know I have and it is most likely true that there may be people who may think that I am a ‘border line control freak’ (or maybe not even ‘border line’).

I have been reading Richard Rohr’s book Hope Against Darkness.  I commend it to you.  Richard is a Franciscan Monk and I think one of the wisest souls on earth.  He writes, “Someone recently asked me why there seemed to be so many control freaks in Church.  I don’t think this phenomenon appears only in the Church; it’s everywhere.  When we know we’re not really transforming culture, we’re not really changing the world, we’re not really having a great deal of influence at the bigger levels, we move to the level of micro-management.  We find some little tiny world where we can be in control and right, where we can be pure and clean.  We might as well be saying, “I can’t clean up the world, so I’m going to at least clean up my living room,” or “I cannot really change and influence people, so I am going to demand total conformity from the pulpit.”

To attack the person out there is usually to simply continue the problem, because he or she is a victim, too.  The reason people do evil, why they hate, sin, make mistakes is because somewhere they have been hurt, rejected, excluded or wounded.  They just keep passing it on.  And the cycle repeats and spreads.  Jesus, you could say, came to break and even stop the cycle.  Punitive behavior only continues the same old game and, I am afraid, most of the Church itself has yet to understand this.  We still think it is about forcing conformity instead of seeking true interior transformation.  True transformation always demands that we pay the price for the other’s growth.  We would rather punish and coerce a response.  God is much more patient. (Pp.28-29)

I seem to keep being directed to the ‘Fruit of the Spirit’ in Galatians 5:22.  “The Fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience…”  There it is ‘patience’.  I’m not the most patient person…are you?  It is only as I allow the Holy Spirit to rule in my heart that I can be patient in certain situations and with certain people.  But isn’t that the ‘God idea’‘Interior transformation’ does make a difference in our lives and in our world.  ‘Interior transformation’ is what saves us from ourselves.

The overused phrase “Let Go and Let God!” seems be the hardest concept for a ‘control freak’ like me.  Maybe it is difficult for you as well.  The Good News is that God is ‘slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love’“Love is patient; love is kind…” (1 Corinthians 13:4).  “God is love.” (1 John 4:8)

 Always Thinking…


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