Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Mom’s Letter 1979

April 18th 1979


 

We had a family council meeting yesterday at my parents house. My mom had a letter that she had written to her family from Japan in '79. It's a fascinating glimpse into the life of my parents in the military overseas. There are a couple reports about things I said as a 3-year-old that I thought were funny and related to the themes of this blog. So here are the questions of a quirky Christian 3-year-old artist as told by his 26 year old mother:


 

"Josh is really thinking about things. Once as I was driving along, he asked – Why does Jesus love bad people? – After explaining God is love, he said – But if bad people are in heaven, they will try to kill Jesus. – So then I explained how bad people have to love Jesus and let Him change their hearts before they can go to heaven. Then Josh said he wanted to go to heaven and play a little bit and come back which led to a lengthy conversation…"


 

And from my dad at the end of the same letter:


 

"As I was taking Joshua out of the bath a couple days ago, he asked me if there were lots of Jesus' and Gods. I said, No. He said – Then how can he be in my heart and in yours and in Mommies and… - I said it was hard to explain. He then asked if Jesus and God were little. I said – No they are very big. – He asked how they could fit in our heart. I said that our God was big enough to fill the universe and still fit in our hearts. He asks good questions."


 

In the 3 decades since, it seems that my questions have only evolved rhetorically, not fundamentally. My child-like consternation with paradox is what's fueling my heterodoxy. Maybe that should tell me something. Maybe my distrust of paradox is an immature reaction what more spiritually mature believers can incorporate without too much trouble. I don't understand how one can simultaneously embrace paradox and logic, but then I'm not very good at math and I don't understand why any nation would ever leave the gold standard or any parent would lie to their kids about Santa Claus. But while I may not be able to digest paradox, like the Santa Claus tradition and the Federal Reserve, there may very well be darn good reasons for them to exist. Perhaps my questioning and doctrinal wandering is simply an act of immaturity.

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