Thursday, February 26, 2009

Looking for God in all the Wrong Places

I once wrote a poem with the above title (which I can not find)--but you can get the gist of verses.

In these postmodern days, I think that is what a lot of people are doing. Those who have absolutely no idea what "postmodern" means are looking for God under stained-glass windows instead of under the I-65 bridge where the homeless hang out. They are looking for God in the comforting old hymns (which I love, by the way) instead of the more contemporary "God of this City". They are looking for God with "inherited maps"(Barbara Brown Taylor's designation)
instead of creating fresh, new paths. And they wonder where He went.

I have just started reading a new book by Barbara Brown Taylor called An Altar in the Word, A Geography of Faith. Focusing on spiritual practices, several of which are not listed in the common sources, the book opens with a chapter entitled The Practice of Waking Up to God. She contends in that chapter and throughout the book that " the last place most people look for God) is right under their feet, in the everyday activities, accidents and encounters of their lives."

She begins with the story of Jacob's "ladder" vision which ends with his saying "Surely the Lord is in this place and I did not know it!" An aside: If you, dear reader, are ever near the Abilene Christian University campus, don't fail to find God at the Jack Maxwell sculpture of this vision.

So I have a new quest--to look for God in unexpected places in this altar of the world.

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