Makes one feel all warm and fuzzy, eh?
Where does this even come from? Certainly not the Bible. The Bible promises “That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”(Rom 10:9) Saved from what? Everlasting torment? A life apart from some divine being which cannot be defined, understood, seen, nor heard from? What is the advantage to being with such a being?
The Bible promises us that we needn’t worry about trivial things like, y’know, food and clothing because “See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. ” (Matt. 6: 28b-33) Tell that to all the starving Christians around the world. Tell that to my Christian neighbors here in America who have lost their jobs and don’t really quite know where their next meal might be coming from. Yep. Don’t worry your little heads about this stuff. God knows what you need. He decided you needed to go without today.
What about that mushy, feel good, personal Jesus stuff? What about when I screw up? When my own actions cause me to stumble and fall? Is He going to be there to catch me and give me a soft landing? Life is messy. When I find myself in a pickle of my own making I have to soak up the vinegar. Who will catch me? It’s really nobody’s responsibility but my own. Oh, don’t get me wrong, I have people I can count on to lend me a shoulder and an ear, but they don’t owe it to me to bail me out. I don’t get a divine “get out of jail free card” either.
I’ve seen disturbing images of Whitney Houston gyrating, praying, being prayed over with the laying on of hands, giving testimony about the greatness of God. She was even baptised in the River Jordan. Holy water couldn’t even cure her of her personal demons. Why? Because there isn’t a magic wand to wave over our problems.
Who will catch me when I fall? Well…if I’ve been a loyal friend, if I’ve been there for others, if I’ve shown love, if I’ve been the best me I can be hopefully those people to whom I’ve been a help will return the favor. At the end of the day I know that when I fall there aren’t any soft landings. Those people shouldn’t bail me out. I’ve gotta get up, dust myself off, and try again. Others will help me but I have to do the heavy lifting. If I don’t then I become a burden.
As for Jesus standing there with His catcher’s mitt? Nah…just look around you. Ask that homeless veteran, that hooker on the corner, that twelve-year-old who just lost his mother, or that dad who just lost his six-year-old to some disease that doesn’t even have a name. Melodramatic? Happens every day. To people pleading with the air, their prayers falling on deaf ears. It’s just a good thing that, at least some of these, have people around them who care. Those who don’t? It’s a lonely, cruel world. ‘Cause nobody’s there catching them.