January 8, 2016

A Thought about how we pray to God

One of the great divides in religion is between those who see God as Love and those who see God as Power. How many of our Anglican prayers address God as Almighty, Omnipotent, "of Power and Might" -- and how many as, "Loving" or "Giving" -- in spite of the fact that the Gospels show us God as Love, sacrificial and self-giving love; these same texts warn us against power over each other instead of love for each other, and bid us ask for daily bread and forgiveness as we would of a loving Parent rather than as petitioners to a Monarch? (It is true, of course, that the Gospels also portray God as King and Judge, but why is that so much reflected in our liturgy as opposed to God as Shepherd or Healer or Gift?)

It strikes me that the various Christian churches, and subdivisions within the whole church, seem to model different reflections of God -- the God who is Love vs. the God who is King. If we are to place ourselves in God's place, what we think of God will reflect how we act towards one another and the world. Jesus warned us not to seek to rule over one another. I hope the Primates Gathering next week takes this to heart.

Tobias Stanislas Haller BSG


Brother David said...

How about the King as Parent. Good monarchs are not only about the common good of their present subjects, but the future subjects as well. In that vein the good monarch is about preparing their heirs to one day stand in their sted. As the heirs of the commonweal of God, what if we were preparing to stand in God’s sted, rather than running amok as the spoiled royal brats?

David said...

I hope so, too. But I'm not holding my breath over it. For most of these folks (certainly not all, but most) it's all about the power of being a prince of the church...