When I was about five years old, I had a secret. I knew that God and I were one, that he was quite proud of me. I knew I was absolutely amazing. I remember being young and stretching out on my mom’s bed after taking a nap in a patch of afternoon sun. These thoughts would make me stretch out my arms and fingers, and my little toes would splay outwards. I would feel happiness and electricity, a warmth in my body.
Then one day, reality struck. Well, looking back I don’t need to say “reality” struck. Let’s rephrase. Then one day, a mis-truth struck me. I was in church with my parents and the other adults during a sermon. My feet were dangling quite high above the red carpet and my 5 siblings were lollygagging around me, leaning on me on one side, another sibling slouching and poking me on the other side. We weren’t allowed to go downstairs to the children’s church because my father didn’t trust the uneducated, soft female teachers there. They might lead us astray. So I was listening to the pastor, and he was speaking of Moses and the burning bush. He said that God’s glory was so great that if a human were ever to see his face, that human would die. I became instantly aghast when I heard that. I wondered, “But why am I not dead, then?”
I knew I had seen God’s face, and I knew my glory was the same as His. I had known this simple truth in my child’s mind while basking in the sun after napping on my mom’s bed. I tried to make sense of this dilemma. The pastor said I was supposed to be dead by now. Hmmm. I wasn’t dead. So maybe God spared me, and only me. Maybe I was more special than any of these nutsy adults in the church? I did an inward check. Did I feel special, still? I listened to my body and thought for a few minutes. Kind of special, still. Yes, God must have spared me. But why was I different than everyone else? Suddenly I remembered the pastor talking about the Anti-Christ, who was clothed with light and thought he was God. Oh no! Perhaps I was the Anti-Christ, since I thought I was one with God? Absolutely not. The Anti-Christ was supposed to be evil, and I was so not evil, at all. The thought horrified me. And confused me all the more.
So I met up with God during the next naptime laying beside my sleeping mom and sister. I conspiratorily whispered to Him, “God, you and I really know better. I don’t think you’d ever kill me for seeing your face. You already spared me because I saw your face. But the pastor at church said I will surely die next time. I guess I get a few free passes with you while I’m young, but then I reach an age or time when I can’t anymore. So I guess the pastor is right? If so, could you please not show your face to me anymore? I really like my life here and don’t want to die. Thanks!”
I was looking forward to feeling better after I said this prayer. But I felt jumbled up on the inside, less relaxed in my body. I woke my mom and told her in probably a less than coherent way my dilemma. By the lack of depth in her eyes, I could tell she didn’t understand, but she assured me I wasn’t the Anti-Christ, that I was a good girl, and that I shouldn’t think anymore about it anymore. So I decided it was probably safer to not think. I decided that I was inside my mind too much, and that I should just focus on the physical, real world instead of daydreaming. So I did just that. But the naps I took with my mom and two year old sister in my mom’s late afternoon, sun-gilded bedroom somehow lost that magical, safe, honey soaked, amber hued happiness that used to settle so happily in my child’s limbs.
My childhood memory is now fresh in my mind because my friend Jason shared an anecdote on Facebook the other day that triggered it. Jason is an intellectual who is always thinking, always pondering. He is a strict, logical, Bible believing kind of fellow.
So Jason wrote: “Autocorrect can be Interesting, but I have an interesting autofill issue that’s kinda funny. My email address begins with “Godistrulyalivinggod@****.com. So, whenever I send myself an email, all I do is type “God” and the email comes to me because autofill finishes the address. I don’t know, it’s funny to me because I send my email address to “God” and it comes to me. Maybe it’s just too early for me to be thinking. Or better yet, me thinking and having access to update my status!”
Oh, Jason! This does makes for a fun story. Full of irony on a groggy morning. But maybe the irony in this story is that there is no irony there at all.
I know that the subject behind my blog post today could be construed as a bit sensitive to some folks. So sensitive that I’m not even putting the subject into words. It is light and floating. I won’t pin it down. I’m keeping a light hearted tone, here. I really do love pushing the envelope and trying to open my mind to all the possibilities. I know my Creator is smiling broadly at me, very pleased with my alert, inquisitive mind. He or she is saying, “Atta Girl!”