The Eclectic Life: Love, Law and Liberty

Month: June, 2012

What Kind of Law is This?

I am sure most people have heard or read of strange laws that cause them to scratch their heads.  One which I heard was that when  the automobile first appeared in America, one city made a law that someone had to walk in front of the car and carry a flag.  I am sure the reason for this law had to do with safety and the novelty of the automobile at the time but today it does not fit how we use and see the automobile.

What is your paradigm for law?  What is your picture of how law works in life?  It appears to me what most view as law would more closely be related to regulations than law.

What we consciously deal with most of the time are statements written to regulate human behavior.  We have laws concerning speed limits, labels on goods,  safety statements regarding work and products, education, law enforcement, licensing of professions and trades and many other human activities.  These are statements usually created trying to address some problem and an attempt to bring about better, more pleasant and equitable situations.  These regulations are needed and many times helpful but the one problem is that humans are fallible and can make mistakes.  Sometimes the regulation can end up having unintended consequences.  I heard once of an administrator in the federal government moving from Washington, D.C.  to a western state to a new position and having to work under the very regulations he/she had created.  He/she found out that what sounded and looked so good in Washington, D.C was not such a good idea out in the field.

So what is consciously dealt with most of the time are regulation concerning human behavior which can be helpful but sometime have unintended consequences and can even be harmful because human can make mistakes.

There is another model for looking at law and one of the best examples comes from the world of science.  Laws can be seen not as an attempt to regulate but to describe how life and reality work.   The law of gravity does not try to regulate objects it just describes the forces which exist between objects.  The law of gravity can be cooperated with and along with other laws, actions can be taken to produce skydiving, airplane flight and space travel.   But the law of gravity cannot be broken,  one cannot stop the forces which exist between objects.  The law of gravity cannot be ignored without injury and death if one steps off a high bridge.

So in coming to an understanding of reality, is it all about trying to regulate all that is going around us or it coming to an understanding of how life works, describing the processes which produce wholeness, wellness and contentment and cooperating with them?

“Great peace have they who love your law…”¹  Finding laws which describe how reality is allows for the use of evidence for support.  Finding laws which point to harmonious function and relationships would bring great peace.  Creating regulations can sometimes work but if we cannot be objective and too much of ourself is invested making corrections can be resisted.  The discovery of law could result in less adjustments having to be made to our paradigm.    Trying to create and maintain regulations have been exhausting to me.  I believe peace can be found in the simpler explanation.  There are laws of life, which if cooperated with can bring fulfilment and peace.

1 Psalms 119:164

The Meaning of Being Human: Significant

In my exploration of what human beings have put forth as to what it means to be human, it appears that most thought on this can be grouped to some degree into three camps.  

First we will explore the paradigm I embrace and which I label as Significant.

“Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness,’  … God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.”¹

I have been sitting here for several minutes and thinking most of the time, “What can I really say to comment on this.”  I invite you to read, ponder and think on these words of Scripture. 

Humans are not a god but they are God like.

Humans are here on purpose, for a purpose and with a destiny.

Humans have an identity rooted in, and modeled after the Creators of humanity.

Humans are a creation of relationship which came out of the relationship of “Us”.

Humans identity is not something which humans create but which is received from our Creators. 

Humans were created to express the character and qualities of our Creators and therefore we also learn about ourselves as learn of our Creators.

“… God made mankind upright, but men have gone in search of many schemes.”²

The  root Hebrew word translated ‘schemes” also carries the idea of ‘inventions”.  This statement seems to be pointing out that humans were created with a magnificent set of qualities, desires and identity but we have gone in search of an identity of our own invention.  So the answer to the question, “Are humans revealing the qualities they were created to exhibit?” would be that they are not! 

But humans have a significant origin, purpose, identity and destiny.  We are not an accident or transient.  This may not be readily apparent but there is evidence to support this which will be explored later. 

I will reveille in the gift of my significance with graditude.

1 Genesis 1: 26,27

2 Ecclesiastes 7:29

We have to fix…

We have to fix the economy.  We have to fix the government.  We have to fix the schools.  We have to fix the legal system.  I have to fix my marriage.  I have to fix my kids.  It seem that everything needs fixing.  Maybe it doesn’t.  Maybe what we need is healing.

I work in the medical field and it occurred to me even in my field that healing is out and fixing is in.  The doctor will fix your heart, fix your broken bone and fix your depression.   What happened to healing?  All medicine can do try to figure out how to cooperate with how the body heals itself.   The broken bone may be set in place with pins but the body heals the fracture with bone growth.   The doctor may put a stent in the artery in the heart but the body grows the new epithelial cells which cover the stent.  Depression medication are required by some people to restore proper brain function but the vast majority of depressed people are in need of a healing of a wound of the heart.

I see the drive to “fix” things is the desire to resolve problems quickly without first looking for the reason for the problem.  Fixing is more about just trying to make a problem go away and not looking to be restored to the optimum state that would be deeply satisfying.  Fixing is an attempt to use power and force to resolve a problem when what more likely is needed is a willingness and patience to enter in a process which would slowly but deeply bring the desired restoration.   Why surrender to a long process when I can get what I want by just forcing it through? 

Healing requires a discovery of and surrender to reality.  I do not like surrendering and admitting I am not going to get what I want, when I want it, in the way I want it.  It seems to me that if A,B,C is done then X,Y,Z should result and the problem is solved.  But I am learning that if I can be willing to learn about how life works, and surrender to what I learn, things may take longer but they do get better.  I do not know where I got the idea but I used to think I could control conversations.  I would spend many hours going over possible conversations in my head that I was going to have with someone in order to control and get the outcome I desired.    This was very stressful and did not resolve issues.   But now I just go ahead and have a conversation with someone and it may not be what I wanted but sometimes it is.  I have more peace now.

In the Scripture there is a word used for solving problems and that is salvation.  It is a word not used much in our everyday lives and I think that is part of the problem,  using words which do not reach us in our lives.  I find it interesting that the root Greek word for where the New Testament word for salvation comes from can mean, “to make well, heal, restore to health.”  In being interested in “saving” us,  Jesus is not looking to “fix” us but to offer a restoration and a healing to that which was originally ours.   To be “fixed” sound go generic but healing sounds much more personal.  That is what Jesus is about, the personal.  Personal healing for personal issues. 

Cars can be fixed but not human beings and not human relationship, for those we need healing.