The Dr. gave me a prescription for muscle relaxant to see if it helps my neck. I’ve taken three since yesterday [every eight hours like the script says]. My muscles are relaxed, but my neck still feels stiff and really sore. It’s getting really old. I’m grumpy and yelling at the kids a lot, so I feel like a horrible mother, too. Hubby gets home from work in an hour and I think I’m going to bed when he does.
I read a couple of articles [one is here] by evangelicals who don’t like Brian McLaren’s books [The Story We Find Ourselves In and A New Kind of Christian.] I guess I can see their points, they think he’s a pluralist [some one who believes that there’s more than one way to heaven, which, if your a Christian, is some pretty serious heresy.]
There are a few things about McLaren’s books that I disagree with as well, such as the notion that there aren’t any true miracles, and that Satan is more a ‘concept’ or force of evil than a person [or former angel]. I’m not saying I believe in the red pitchfork guy, but the concept of Satan and demons [as fallen angels] is one that I don’t have a problem with. I think maybe it’s a combination of an actual person and an opposing force to God’s goodness.
But, in regards to pluralism, I’m still struggling with that. In the Bible, Jesus says, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” That presents a problem with any view that says that all religions lead to God. Jesus said he is the only way to heaven, and that either makes him an egomaniacal fool, or God [and the only god with a bona fide way to heaven]. If he’s not God, then I don’t see how anyone can call him a great teacher. Usually when someone claims to be god, they end up in a home for crazy people.
But at the same time, I can’t just disregard all the other religions in the world. The fact is, most religions come back to similar fundamentals. They refer to doing good things, becoming a good person, resisting evil, etc. So I’m having a hard time saying that if you belong to another religion that teaches goodness and fights against evil, you will definitely go to hell because you haven’t accepted Jesus as your savior [that’s Christian speak for becoming a follower of Jesus.]
Christianity teaches that you can never be good enough to go to heaven on your own power, because we’re all selfish, and selfishness is pretty much the root of all sin. On an arbitrary level, that makes sense to me, until I start looking at individual people, and the things they do that are good, that are based on a desire to do good for others and not based on a desire to look good to others. I have a really hard time believing that those people will go to hell.
Some of this stuff may seem like a no-brainer to you, but this is what keeps me awake at night and makes me wonder if I’m losing my faith. I am coming from a very fundamentalist beginning to my faith and feel like I’m leaping off the edge of a cliff without a parachute. I have no idea where I’m going or where I’ll end up. The main thing that I am clinging to is the verse that says, “you will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” [Jeremiah 29:13?] I am seeking Him with all my heart, and I am finding Him, but this part of the search is pretty scary.