From The Pastor,

Hate is a very strong word. We have been hearing that word a lot in the news recently. One of the problems with hate is that the emotions associated with the word can quickly move a group from merely being vocal to being physical and violent.

I understand being passionate about things, but I don’t understand how some humans can think that other humans are actually less than human. I don’t get it.

In the first story of creation, we are told this: Then God said, “Let us make humankind in our image, according to our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the wild animals of the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.”

So God created humankind in his image,
in the image of God he created them;
male and female he created them.

God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth and subdue it; and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the air and over every living thing that moves upon the earth.” God said, “See, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree with seed in its fruit; you shall have them for food. And to every beast of the earth, and to every bird of the air, and to everything that creeps on the earth, everything that has the breath of life, I have given every green plant for food.” And it was so. God saw everything that he had made, and indeed, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day. (Genesis 1:26-31)

Is God white? Is God black? Is God red? These are ridiculous questions because God is not human nor does God have pigmented skin. Several years ago The Shack, written by William Paul Young, created quite a stir among many Christians. This work of fiction depicted God the Father as a black female who goes by the name of “Papa.” God the Son is a “Middle Eastern” man dressed like a laborer. God the Holy Spirit is an Asian woman who is difficult to see because she “shimmers.” Christians, especially conservative Christians were all but calling this heretical writing. I found it delightful. How we imagine God tries to limit who God is and what God can do. The reality is that God truly is beyond our imaginations. And we are left to ponder what it means that we were created in God’s image.

I think it has, in part, to do with our capacity to love. In love God created everything there is. We are called to live in that love and through that love. Too bad that’s such a difficult thing to do.

Your fellow servant of Christ,