I find this near one-liner to be extremely funny, even though it describes my relationship with God for about 80% of my life. I never really wanted to be an atheist so I called myself an agnostic. Guess what? God never answered the Dial-A-Prayer for Agnostics either. After all, who would remain an agnostic if God actually picked up the phone? So, after a while, I pretty much stopped calling. All my life, I’ve known people who have a firm belief in God and the power of prayer. They would say God answers their calls, although to my eyes, their prayers weren’t answered any more often than mine. It’s often seemed to me that this is where believers get to be apologists for God. When terrible things happen, we let God off by suggesting God has a Greater Plan that we aren’t privy to or let our relationship with God be about the Next Life, not this one. We attribute the evils to the influences of God’s Fall Guy, Satan, on poor, weak mankind. But didn’t God make mankind weak … and create Satan, for that matter? I know people who say they hear God when they pray or meditate. I try to give them the benefit of the doubt, even though they make me a little nervous. People who are sure they know what God wants have done some serious damage in this world.
And yet one of my secrets to finding a modicum of faith in my sixties has been the 11th Step’s suggestion to improve my Conscious Contact with God through prayer and meditation. People have told me that prayer is when I speak to God and meditation is when God answers. I’ve never had the latter experience unless you take a more liberal definition of meditation. If I consider engaging in a task which completely engages my consciousness as meditation, then writing often becomes meditation … and reveals insights which I can (if I so choose) see as answers from God. That sometimes happens as I try to articulate my spiritual process Sundays here on Bud’s Blog. More frequently, it happens when I let the words flow, free form, in my Morning Pages. Am I ever sure those insights are God’s Will? Occasionally. More often, they feel right so I act on them … I’ll find out soon enough if they’re not and frequently, they are. The point is that for me, Conscious Contact needs to be a two-way process and writing is one of the practices that makes that so.
That works for me. I hope what you do works for you. Have a good Sunday.