Sunday, June 11, 2006

Is there a deeper level?

I woke up this morning with this thought in my head. Is there a deeper level?

I guess over the years we have all heard that kind of statement, we have probably said it, a deeper level of commitment, a deeper level of spirituality, a deeper level of friendship. But what does it mean? I know on one level it makes sense but how do we do it? Do more, spend more time with God, be more open in our friendships.

But do we actually go deeper?

My hands sometimes feel tied by history, by DNA, by my understanding of God. I can jump all the hoops and push through but in the end I am still me. Someone once said "we spend our lives becoming more of who we are" but what if I am not deep and just spend more of my life becoming shallow, anyway who defines shallow, one persons deep could be another persons shallow. In fact I find it hard sometimes to relate to "deep" people, they seem so serious.

I like fun and laughter and sometimes can't resist making an inappropriate comment at a serious moment. Not because I don't like serious moments I just get the impression that the world is in danger of taking itself to seriously.

We need to laugh more, love more and have more fun, then perhaps we will become deeper.

I think you are deep if you can get through life and still laugh.

In my eyes deep people are happy people. Not serious intellectuals, I like happy intellectuals.

Do you ever find yourself in situations where everybody is trying so hard to be deep and profound that you don't know what to say because you are afraid you will be found out as shallow? People pray long deep prayers that stifle your own short whisper of a prayer. People talk about the Bible like they have the inside track and I sometimes find it hard to make sense of it all. We become firgthened to say "I don't get it" or "your answer just doesn't seem to work for me" My advice is embrace the shallowness don't be deterred in being you. God can be found in the shallows.

If we link simplicity to shallows is it really shallow? Keep it simple stupid. I don't mean simple answers, because there aren't any, but simple responses to deep questions are better. The response I find myself using more and more is "I don't know"

I don't know why good people die, why the evil get rich and the rich stay poor, I don't know really what God thinks about homosexuality, sure I can quote a few bible verses.... What about tithing.... what about Sunday morning meetings.... do babies who die go to heaven (we'd like to think so but if we truly believe the doctrine of original sin can they??) Why do people who teach prosperity always seem materially rich... Why do people get healed in Africa and not the west... Sometimes I think deep answers to these questions are clever boxes we put God in. We can formulize and define God to easily with clever answers.

Depth to me is about being true to yourself, keeping it simple, laughter and living with questions.

It's Sunday, that felt like a sermon. Anway I am preaching to myself.


lisa said...

i often feel inadequate because i often hear myself saying "i don't know" or "i don't get it either" all the time. but in the end i am comforted that i can't understand God or his ways. i'd be nervous if i could wrap my mind around him. thanks for your thoughts. best sermon in a while :-)

Don said...

I just had to link to this one again Brian. Thank you for making me feel wonderfully normal and not alone!

Jude said...


That is me all over. A lot of people see me as deep/serious, but I often struggle in deep situations and deep theological discussions. So much so that the way I cope is to make light-hearted (sometimes) inappropriate comments.