by Andrew Cromwell
Every once in a while it is a good idea to make
sure that you are living in reality. My impression is that there are many
people who don’t do this often enough and they walk around with a false set of
beliefs. Sometimes these beliefs are harmless, even if wrong (like believing
there’s a frog on a log on a hole in the middle of the sea). Other times, wrong
beliefs can cost you great grief and suffering (like believing that the stock
market will always go up in the long run).
There are a few beliefs that it is incredibly
important for us to get right. If we get these wrong, we risk losing
everything. Jesus said, “Don’t be afraid of those who kill the body, be afraid
only of God.” We spend a lot of time worrying and being afraid of so many things,
but if we can get a few things straight, then everything else will fall into
There is a popular belief these days that sincere
belief equals true belief. We hear this expressed all the time when people say
things like, “I’m spiritual but not religious.” What this means is that people
want the freedom to pick and choose the elements of spirituality that they like
but they do not want to be bothered with the parts they don’t like.
People want to be able to talk to God, but don’t
want to be told that they have to change their life. They want to do spiritual
stuff—light a candle, spread a prayer rug, quote a verse—but they don’t want to
have to do difficult stuff—adjust their behavior, change the way they talk to
others, pray when they don’t feel like it.
People want to believe sincerely that God is okay
with them and their life.
But what if He isn’t? What if God isn’t okay with
the pick and choose, consumer oriented spirituality? What if sincere belief is
just not enough? What if He requires more from us?
Well, if He does, then we had better change our
I am inclined to believe that when one reads the
Bible, there is a picture that emerges of a God who is loving and powerful and
who wants to have a relationship with all human beings. But in order for that
relationship to happen, we humans have to hand him the direction of our life.
We have to be willing to put him in the driver’s seat.
The trouble is, we like the driver’s seat. I know
that I do! But I have found that when I let Him drive, the trip is always