Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Santa Clause Faith

When I was dating my husband – and I have been married 22 years and have a 16 year old son and a 13 year old son, so you know that was a long time ago – Steve told me a story of a father and his little girl. She was three – and any of you who have had three year old children know that they are not always perfectly behaved. She was having one of those days that try parents’ souls. Perhaps in a fit of frustration, he picked her up and stood her on the checkout counter in a store. She was just tall enough that this made father and daughter standing eye to eye. He told her that if she didn’t straighten up, he was going to call Santa Clause and tell him that she was being a bad girl.

As you can imagine, that didn’t set very well with the little girl, and she started crying – not little tears, but big loud noisy sobs. “Don’t call him; I’ll be good! I’ll be good.”

Sometimes I think we have a Santa Clause faith. While we may not admit it, and we might not even agree that is the case, but are there times when we believe that our good behavior will be rewarded and our bad behavior will be punished? That maybe God has a score card and he keeps track of our mistakes and sins, counting them up?

The good news is this: there is nothing – nothing – you can do to make God love you more. And the really good news is that there is nothing you can do to make God love you less. Nothing.

He loves you, and he loves me. He doesn’t love us because we are without sin. He knows every ugly, black sin, every corner of our humanness. He absolutely knows who we are. And he loves us. He died for us. In fact, if you had been the only person who would be saved by his death, he would have died, just for you. Just for me. He couldn’t possibly love us more; he will never love us less.

I think it is imperative that we come to understand that. Vital.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with you completely. It's too easy to believe that God is keeping score of our cosmic brownie points, and that God will give us what we want if we just pray hard enough and ask nicely enough.

9:25 AM  

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