Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Word of the Week Wednesday


adjective \ˌan(t)-thrə-pə-ˈmr-fik\

: described or thought of as being like human beings in appearance, behavior, etc.
: considering animals, objects, etc., as having human qualities

A short post today because my book came out yesterday and we've got two swim meets this week and it's my kids' last week of school and so I am scrambling to Get It All Done before they descend upon me and my days alone at home become my days inundated with children begging to go to the pool.

So here's a quote on this very long, kinda complicated word that I wanted to share with you-- it's one that got me thinking about my own thought life, and my own tendency to anthropomorphize God:

"One reason we are miserly with ourselves is scarcity thinking. We don't want our luck to run out. We don't want to overspend our spiritual abundance. Again, we are limiting our flow by anthropomorphizing God into a capricious parent figure." The Artist's Way, Julia Cameron

I'd never given much thought to what it means to give God human qualities until I read this, but I do it. I do it all the time. I relate to Him as I relate to other humans, partly because it's what I know and feel comfortable with but partly because it makes Him more manageable. Humans can be controlled, manipulated, dominated, swayed, etc. God can't. He is completely other and apart. And that's out of control. It's unsafe and unsettling. And yet...

I share these two CS Lewis quotes that come to mind-- and challenge you to think about your own tendency to make God like you, or your dad, or some other human, when He is anything but. And while that can be scary and overwhelming, it can also be really freeing and amazing. I guess it's all in how you look at it.

“He'll be coming and going" he had said. "One day you'll see him and another you won't. He doesn't like being tied down--and of course he has other countries to attend to. It's quite all right. He'll often drop in. Only you mustn't press him. He's wild, you know. Not like a tame lion.”
C.S. Lewis, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe    

“Safe?” said Mr. Beaver; “don’t you hear what Mrs. Beaver tells you? Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.”
C.S. Lewis, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe

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