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Tuesday, February 10, 2009

One Path, One Choice - in a 'Give Me Options' World

I have got a crazy head cold. It came on fast Friday night; hit while I was getting ready to go out for an impromptu sushi date. Anyone that knows me well, knows I <3 me some sushi :)... So, if I'm passing up the chance to eat with chopstics or enjoy some octopus? I -really- don't feel well.

I had stuff for sore throats, for stuffy noses, lil' noses if I wanted to go the liquid route (1) stuff for flu-like symptoms, and seriously? Three different medications for colds. Who needs all these choices? I went and found the nyquil and went to town. Because really? Nyquil hits on ALL the symptoms. It's a little tough to take (2), but it takes care of you. And then it hit me - why do I need all these other options? If Nyquil makes it better; and I -know- it makes me better... what does buying all the other stuff do for me? It provides the illusion of choice, of options; and I have been conditioned by society to believe that options? Are necessary.

For the past couple of weeks, I had been struggling with what I wanted to correlate the concept of our mistaken belief that we need a lot of options or paths to choose from in pretty much everything in life. I prayed for some kind of clarity - and I'd like to think God gave it to me by stuffing me up. He's got a fantastic sense of humor, no? Sure, it's a simplistic example; but, it drives the point home. Those options for me were basically insurance; they made sure I was 'covered' in the case of illnesses. We do the same kind of thing all over our lives: with our job, with our dating relationships, with outfits (3)
, and lately - it seems like some people are even doing it with religion.

It's difficult, I guess. To nail yourself down to ONE belief, one train of thought, one existence. What if you're wrong? The Creator of the World, the God you worship -it's a big deal. So, I guess people are dealing with it by mixing their religions; it's kind of like hedging bets. The wildest one I've met so far is the Christian Buddhist. Tell me how THAT works. The only combined religion that really makes sense to me is Messianic Judaism - because Jesus? Was a Jew. They recognize the same God and live by the same principles. Where they divide is over who exactly the Messiah was. But, I've covered that in an earlier blog, so I'll drop that there.

This mixing of faiths? Seems dangerous to me. You're saying, essentially, that one is not enough. But it is - John 3:16 - For God so loved the world, that he gave his ONLY begotten son; so that whomever believes in Him, shall not be lost, but have eternal life."

One Son. One Life. One Need. One Result. ONE PATH.

Only needed one. God didn't need two children to save us; the sacrifice of the one was enough to cover all the sins, of all the believers in the World, until His 2nd coming. Think on the magnitude of that for a moment. That's one.big.sacrifice - all for us. To bridge the gap of our sins to His heart. One was all it took. So, for those that say they are Christian, why do we need more?

It's trust. We don't quite trust that one option is enough. That it covers all of it. And trust IS faith. Faith in what you can't see; faith in what you choose. And, for people today, trust? Is not a concept that we totally get. So, we mitigate that through choosing multiple paths - so, if we're wrong in one area, we might be right somewhere else. Tell me I'm wrong... because you see it EVERYWHERE. The problem with that is diminishing returns. I make a lot of correlations to dating, because they're easy references - so, here's another:

In high school, you dated one person at a time. They were your little boyfriend/girlfriend and you poured ALL your energy, focus, and mixed tapes into that one person. :) It was enough... well, at least for that week or two until the next infatuation came along. But as adults, oh we got smarter. We figured out that if we dated a BUNCH of people at one time, under the guise of 'non-committed,' we'd find the ONE person we'd want to spend time with faster. But it divides our attention; which in turn actually makes it harder to get to know who these people REALLY are, how they fit with US, and in turn... for them to know who we are. It doesn't work as well - and if you don't believe me? Check out our divorce rate.

God doesn't have a problem knowing who we are - but, we DO have an issue with being able to clearly see Him when we're also trying to figure out how He fits in with Buddah, Allah, and Pop Culture. Just as dating a bunch of people at one time rarely works out the way you'd want it to, you can't "date" a bunch of different religions - your two feet eventually have to pick one option in order for your faith to be able to properly expand and grow.


1. No, thank you! Despite the fact that I'm afraid of them after watching a former boyfriend pass clean out because he stimulated his vagus nerve with 4-way; it's still just kinda icky. I'd rather suffer. :D

2. This could be because it tastes like what I imagine a twist between tar and castor oil might taste like.

3. I ALWAYS have a back-up outfit and really, until last year - I always kept one in the car. Never know when you'll need to be a quick change artist! :)

4. This still doesn't feel finished, but as you can see by the head cold reference (and you know me) - I started it a couple of weeks ago. Shoot me an email if you have thoughts on where I should take this - for now, must.go.to.work!

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