Last night I sat at the piano & played hymns. Now, I use the word "played" rather loosely. If you consider playing what untrained children do when they bang on the piano, you are pretty close to having an accurate mental picture of what I do on the piano. I am no real musician there. I can sort of read music, & I can sort of put my fingers on the right keys to play based on what I see & know. However, I do most of my playing with my right hand only because if I played with both hands, a four-minute hymn would take about 45 minutes. I am just really slow at figuring out every note & then getting them all right.
Despite the fact that I am nowhere near church pianist quality, I find playing hymns very relaxing. I could - and sometimes do - sit there for hours flipping through my collection of hymnals, picking out songs that we sing frequently (like "It is Well") or songs I haven't heard since I was a kid at Bethel Baptist (like "Brethren, We Have Met to Worship").
When I first started playing last night, the kids were out with the youth director for an evening of fun. There for awhile, I had my doubts about how the changes in our church youth program were going to work out for good. I can't say exactly why - it's much too complicated a subject for a blog entry & not something I'd want to publish on the Internet anyway. I feel a little better about the subject now. I think my decision to not act in haste was probably a good one. Fortunately, God gave me the sense to realize that my perception of reality wasn't extremely accurate last month. I mean, when you look at all the stuff that happened in September, that's not hard to comprehend.
Last night I thought about all this, & I thought of how we often turn our eyes from Jesus & onto the issues that divide us. Most of us Christians let too much divide us. I know we can't all agree on everything. Can we agree to disagree? Can we be united in sharing God's love? In spreading His Word? The question "What would Jesus do?" comes to mind. I wonder. I think people's ideas of what Jesus would do are vastly different based on what they've been taught in churches & in homes. I had a friend whose image of God was that of a strict, almost unforgiving taskmaster. As a child, this lady lived near my husband, who remembers the lady's father as a harsh & rigid man. (He also tells stories of the man's mental breakdown, probably the result of PTSD.)
Maybe this principle explains why I think God has a great, but also sometimes sarcastic, sense of humor. That's my Dad! I wouldn't say God's quite as sarcastic...but then Dad's not that bad either.
We humans are all flawed. Could we possibly therefore have flawed images of what God wants us to do? I think so. Obviously, people twist the words of the Bible to mean what they want them to mean. But when we look at the big picture, we should all see something close to the same thing - a loving God who gave His Son for the eternal salvation of us flawed humans.
Well, I could sit here all day & talk philosophy & theology. In the last few days, I've really thought a lot about it. But, I have things to do. I want to cook a good dinner tonight, to work on painting more of the kitchen (there's an idea for a future blog entry) & to clean the garage a little more. It was such a huge job, I couldn't do it in one day. So, those subjects will have to wait until later.