Growing Pains!

I read a lot of the writings of Wendy Francisco, a Godly lady who is (alongside others, including myself) in the process of rethinking exactly what we believe and why we believe it. It’s a process called ‘deconstruction’ (not the same as demolition!). In particular, we are rethinking our ideas on the concept of the ‘nasty god’ of the Old Testament and instead replacing that picture (a very badly graven image) with the ‘exact representation of [God’s] Being’ (Heb 1:3) that is Jesus Christ. In a sense, we are reading the stories and ideas about God in the Bible through the ‘Jesus lens’ of Love. Here’s  a recent post from Wendy describing how this process feels, and what benefits it has. Enjoy!

“Many people are undergoing what is being called a “deconstruction” …this is something that just happens when you let go of a god who is retributive, and “just” in a human sense, (retaliatory), and replace those beliefs with the God who loves all humanity and is, as scripture says, not counting sins against people.

“Deconstruction is not easy. People are sharing periods of shame, loss, disorientation, numbness, anger, and rejection from others, as dead religion loses hold. Well goodness, we built our personalities on this stuff, we relate to people through these lenses. When they crumble, it shakes everything. What makes it worth the difficulty is realizing that humanity is one eternal family. We have been holding to dead religion at the cost of being okay with, or at least resigned to, billions of souls in hell forever. When it proves false, both in reality and in scripture, you are scrambling to hold your personhood together, especially when this happens later in life. But you are also freed, your empathy begins to recover. You experience the peace that religion promised, but couldn’t deliver. (Call me crazy, but thinking I was in a special group who would not burn like billions of others would, is hardly “peace”.)

“The tangible joy of these things sees you through the difficulty of deconstruction/”metanoia”. “Metanoia” is a Greek word awkwardly translated as “repent”, but it actually means to have an epiphany, a mind change. And it isn’t like flipping a light switch… it takes some time for all those neurons to disconnect and reconnect. Some people find God without going through years of dead religion but those of us who have gone through it have even greater cause to celebrate, that the dark cloud we labored under has dissipated, and our indoctrinated fears are put to rest. Among a large list of things I am thankful for today, this is a big one — that “love keeps no account of a wrong done”, and my difficult shame-based world is being upended.”

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