My version in response to this…
“I am praying for you.”
Translation: You matter and I am concerned. Practicing the art of surrender and trust is so hard for me whether it’s to, “trust the process”, “trust the universe”, “trust the pole”, or anything else. This includes surrendering you and your outcome. I personally choose to pray to God because my past experiences, my faith, and my heart make me believe this is the most loving and viable option.
“If you don’t get COVID-19, we will claim God shielded.”
Translation: I won’t. I will struggle with why some people did and some people didn’t. I might wonder why a person ignores every request to social distance. I might wonder why they still got it even if they seemed to do everything right. I likely will never understand. Whether I believe in God or not, I will resolve that no human ever has all the answers….so we create our own. This gives us an illusion of control where we truly have none. But humanly, we believe an answer will make us feel better. In the meantime, I will continue to wrestle w God and human reasoning, just as I always do. The answers will be my own, for this is my journey.
“If you do get it and recover, we’ll claim God healed.”
Translation: if you get it and recover, I will be eternally grateful. I will again struggle with why some people got it and recovered while some didn’t. I will choose to believe that, “Jesus wept“ while we wept. I will remember that life and breath are precious and none of us know when our first or last days will be… This matters if a big semi hits us, if we take our own lives, if there is cancer or heart disease, if there is just no reason…Not one human makes it out alive. We can choose gratitude or we can choose constant struggle. Personally, I usually choose a little of both. I don’t know how to do different than that, I myself am human.
“If you die, we’ll explain that God had a reason..”
Translation: this is the biggest copout religious people ever use. I don’t believe God controls us like checker pieces, but I used to. I believed that we were like goldfish swimming around in his tank. Now I believe the saying that I’ve heard so many times. “We are not humans having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings, having a human experience.” This life is not permanent, no matter your belief system.
It is possible that the same results are possible by praying to a telephone pole. Again, my life has led me to this place and I believe the deep joy I experience in the midst of shit is the result.
I recently read that we don’t pray to change God, we pray to change ourselves.
If the same happens by praying to a telephone pole, you change….then good for you or whomever.
I’ve tried endless options as far as beliefs and religion go.
I don’t like religion and I don’t like rules around it. I do like relationship and relationship with God has gotten me through so very much in my life.
Some people can call that a crutch and others say “God is good”.
I believe the latter and I believe that I serve a God who loves us more than I could ever imagine.
None of that changes the fact that I am human and I am infallible. Whether I’m a believer or not, I never get all the answers.
I wonder if life is less about the outcome and more about the journey.
That said, I respect the journey..your’s, mine, and everyone else’s. I’m only walking in my shoes.