God. A three lettered word that leaves us scratching our heads. It somehow defies the limits of language, and all the rules of common-sense grammar. It means something, but who knows what it means? Who of us has not heard the word “God”? Who of us truly knows who or what “God” is?
The word is enigmatic, mysterious, shrouded in veils, loaded with centuries of jargon. Archaic and old fashioned. Modern and hip. Revealed. Yet hidden. Clear. Yet Obscure. Thrilling and boring. Alluring and repulsive. It all depends on who you ask. And each of us has many suggestions of what to say about that one word: “God”.
Is God a thought, an idea, or something a little more substantial? A thing or a person? Male or female or both? Many or only one? Does or does not exist? Created by humanity or the creator of humanity? Unintelligent or more intelligent than the greatest of our minds? Who or what is God? And how is anyone supposed to answer such questions?
Our questions are as ancient as humanity itself. Every nation, people, and tongue have attempted to provide an answer. The answers given are so diverse and different. One hardly knows where to start.
Should we care? Why even bother to enter the conversation or speculate about such questions? Is the effort even worth it?
The answer seems to be yes. Despite all the controversy, one thing is clear. God is famous. And God is famous for a reason. Humanity’s interest in “God” is not simply theoretical. It is self-serving. Behind all the controversy, there are personal agendas, individual desires and interests, that motivate the debate. Powerful motives move people to talk and think about God. Somehow, God seems to answer or meet or provide humanity with something, something humans believe is extremely valuable. Otherwise why even bother to talk about God? Why not just forget about God and move on?
Just take a few minutes to think about the times when people usually pray. When loved ones die. When facing one’s own mortality. During periods of guilt and regret. When facing the consequences of choices. In the face of sickness and bereavement. In hardship and pain. When powerless, and fearing power. When powerful and pondering what to do with power. In sickness and health. In joy and sorrow. And on so many other occasions on our way from birth until death ends and unravels our lives.
So let us talk together, dear reader. Let us chat about this word. Let us assess what our minds can discover and find out about God.