Truth: Confession

I’m taking a class called ‘Spirituality for Church Leaders’ and it’s kind of a double-edged sword for me.  I know that I need to experience more ways to connect with God, but at the same time I’m very reserved and suspicious of new things.  While I’m learning new ways to pray and express myself in the presence of my Creator, I’m also running this mix tape through my mind: Is this really going to make a difference?  Is that too far into the unknown?  What if someone sees me?  Do I need to do this, or can I get away with less?

One of my biggest struggles came last week as Dr. Johnson sat in the front of the class, gently stroked his snow-white beard, and then instructed us to write a prayer of confession: “I want you to write down everything you need to confess to God.”  Part of his wisdom (and a source of my frustration) is that he doesn’t go into great detail with these things – whatever we feel we need to do, we’re to do it.

Truthfully, while I knew that God knew all that I did, my having to admit those errors was difficult.  I sat staring at my sheet of paper for what seemed like ages, mulling over the assignment: Do I write down what I feel guilty about, or do I write down the easy stuff that won’t be too bothersome to admit?  How much confessing can I do and still make it count?  What exactly do I need to confess?  What if someone finds this sheet of all my sins?

I know, too, what constitutes a sin, so this confession thing shouldn’t be that hard.  The things that hurt me, the things that hurt others, the things that hurt God – those are sins.  The things that are not done with love, the words spoken in resentment, the cold shoulders given to people I don’t like – those are sins.  Putting love of others or things before my love of God, desiring more than I have (and not being thankful for any of it), being jealous that so-and-so is spending more time with others than me – those are sins.

I know what sins are because I do them all the time.  But I’m not good at telling God all about it.  When I was a child, I accidentally broke the car antenna off of a neighbor’s car.  Immediately after it happened I began to cry because I knew I’d have to tell my parents, and I’d get in trouble, so I tried my best to make it look like nothing happened.  When I sin, I feel guilt and remorse, but it doesn’t always push me into confession…because if I confess, I’m going to have to face the consequences.  I’m more afraid of God’s wrath than I am at understanding that I have a loving God who’s ready to forgive.


One of the great things we do in the Presbyterian church is a prayer of confession – it’s a time to reflect on our lives and admit where we’ve missed the mark.  I’ve come to appreciate this time because I don’t do it often enough in my life.  I don’t readily acknowledge where and when I’ve sinned (because if you don’t admit it, it didn’t happen…right?).

One of the other great things we have is “a strong affirmation of trust in the forgiving grace of a loving God.”[1]  In this time of affirmation we are assured that God loves us, is more than willing to forgive us, and welcomes us with open arms.

As I get more comfortable with confession, I know that I’ll get more comfortable with God’s love.  And vice versa.  I learned with my parents that I need to tell them everything because they love me and want to help me be better, do better, and live better.  The same goes with God – I need to confess where I’ve made a mess and receive the gift of forgiveness.  May I be strong enough to confess my sins, and may I be weak enough to admit I need God’s love.

much love. sheth.

[1] The Theology and Worship Ministry Unit, Book of Common Worship (Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 1993), 89.

Truth: Emulate

Last week I was given this prompt for one of my classes: Why do you support, believe in, follow, or wish to emulate …. (the person, organization, etc., of importance to you)?  On the surface, it was a rather simple exercise and I could have easily gone for one of the softball-sized answers that came to my mind.  I could have listed my parents, Thomas Merton, or Saint Francis – there are a lot of good people to emulate.  But for some reason (I like to make my life difficult) I didn’t want to go that route and I wrestled with being brutally honest with myself.

There are a few truths I have heard about my life: I know that I am a child of God, I am a friend of Christ, and I am accepted.  I know I am holy and beloved, chosen by God, and am a new creature.  I know I am set free.  I have heard, recited, and known these descriptors of myself for a long time.  But while these words describe the person God sees me as, I don’t always believe God’s vision.  If I’m honest, I wish to emulate the person God knows me to be; I wish to emulate who God sees in me.

It’s an odd thing, because I can tell others that they are summed up by these scriptural qualities, and I thoroughly believe that they are these things.  But my scrutinizing self-doubt and savage self-condemnation keep me from fully living into these truths. Instead, I lean into falsities:  I’m not good enough.  I’m not holy enough.  I’m not worthy enough.  I don’t always do what’s right.  I don’t always speak love.  I am more displeased, irritated, and unforgiving of my own short-comings than I am with someone else’s.  I can overlook my neighbor’s terrible sins against me but I can’t get over my own little misstep that did no harm but to myself.


When I discover “that the least amongst them all, the poorest of all the beggars, the most impudent of all the offenders, the very enemy himself – that these are within me, and that I myself stand in need of the alms of my own kindness – that I myself am the enemy who must be loved,”¹ that is when I know my truest self.  And that is when I will begin to know the real ‘me’ whom God sees.  When I understand who I am in God’s eyes, when I can honestly emulate that person, and when I can love myself intensely and freely then I will be free to love others just as passionately.

If I can emulate who God sees me as, I can love – love God, love myself, and love my neighbor.  When I set free within my soul – within my deepest being – the love and compassion of God to conquer my heart and accept myself as the person God knows me to be, that is when I will truly live and love.

much love. sheth.

1  Carl Jung, Modern Man in Search of a Soul, (London: Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner & CO LTD, 1933), 271-272.

Truth: As.

There’s this idea that’s been rolling around in my mind that I should see Jesus in others; I can’t recall if it was in my recent readings, whether it was just some idea I had, or if it was from something I saw somewhere in my life.  [The amount of information coming at me lately has been overwhelming.]  I’m not opposed to the idea; it’s kind of a good thought and, truthfully, I probably do it myself from time to time.  When I see Jesus in others, I’m probably treating them a lot better than I normally would: I’m probably nicer, gentler, more patient and understanding of others when I see them as Jesus, when I seem Jesus in them.  It makes me a better person to others.

But there’s a flaw in this thinking, and it’s given me pause to think about the way I’m behaving towards others.  I’m wondering if this way of thinking isn’t conditional…is the only reason I’m loving someone else is because I’m seeing Jesus in them?  Am I actually loving the person, or am I loving someone else I’m imposing upon them?

I wonder this because I claim that I love, and I claim that I love a lot of people.  But am I loving the person, or am I loving my idea of who that person is?  Do I truly love my African-American neighbors for exactly who they are?  Am I loving the people experiencing homelessness for who they are?  Are my actions, words, thoughts and love for my LGBT+ brothers and sisters for  them and who they are?  Is my love for that person who really annoys me in class for who they are?

While it may seem like I’m splitting hairs here, I think it’s an important distinction to both acknowledge and change in my thinking.  If I am loving the person of Jesus I see in others, I’m not loving the person in front of me.  If I am treating that person lovingly – as I would Christ – what happens when I lose sight of Jesus, who I see in that person?  Do I still love them or does my love, like my vision of Christ in them, fade away as well?

Certainly we are to treat others the way we would treat Jesus, but I don’t think we’re called to look past the personhood of others.  I don’t think Jesus ever called for us to place him in a substitutionary role for how we treat others.  I think we’re supposed to love the person for who they are, where they are, however they are.  We’re supposed to love our neighbors and our enemies; we’re supposed to love those who are like us and those totally different from us; we’re supposed to love those we agree with and disagree with; we’re supposed to love regardless.

The key to this is the word ‘as’ – treat others as you would treat Christ.  In its simplest definition, it means “to the same degree or amount” – treat others to the same degree or amount you would treat Christ.  This tiny word holds so much weight!  It maintains the personhood of the other; it doesn’t replace them with Christ, but encourages me to see both.  This little, necessary word opens my eyes to the way I’ve been living.  Have I been treating my brothers and sisters, my neighbors, and the strangers I come across in the same manner I would treat Christ?  Am I acknowledging their personhood while still treating them as I would Christ?  

This is not easy to think about, and honestly, even more so to put into action.  May God guide my vision, my actions, and my thinking by allowing me to see both the person and the Christ.  May we allow others to be who they are and love them unconditionally as they are.

much love. sheth.

Truth: Christmas.

Honestly, this isn’t really a Truth Tuesday post…just a little quote I heard a few years back that continues to rattle my core being.

I first listened to this On Being podcast a few years ago as I was delivering the mail during the Christmas season (the USPS delivers far more gifts than Santa does – so you should start leaving gifts for your letter carrier). The following quote concerns Christmas and Jesus, and I still don’t know what to do with it; I’m not entirely sure what it means to me, but I continue to wrestle with it:


“It’s a nice, pretty story about two nice, good looking people, usually white…you know, who had a pretty baby in a manger. But in a sense, it’s a terrifying story. In terms of what they had to undergo. And it’s also, I have to say, it is a shocking story. It’s not just a baby. It is God being born in human form. And it’s just as shocking as the resurrection. And I think we’ve tamed it. And in a sense it doesn’t demand our belief. We can just kind of look on it, and say, well, that’s cute.

But if you say to people do you believe that that is God incarnate in that stable. What does that mean for you, that God comes to us as the most helpless being that you could imagine? You know, sort of crying, and wetting his pants, and needing to be nursed. What does that say to us about who God is for us, and how God is for us, and how much God loved us to do that. And that, I think is an entirely different story than, you know, the — the kind of Christmas-cardy stuff that we see.”

My friends, may your holidays be filled with shock, with wonder, with helplessness, with a desire to share with others about your faith – whatever that may be. And may we all come to understand the beauty and reality of Christ’s birth.

much love. sheth.

Truth: Long, Dark Nights.

This Friday, the sun will set in Austin at 5:34 pm, and will not rise until 7:23 am on Saturday – roughly ten hours of daylight and fourteen hours of darkness. The longest, darkest night of the year.

We’re told through advertisements and tradition that during Christmas we are supposed to be happy, full of joy, and surrounded by family and friends. But many of us are dealing with other emotions: grief, loneliness, depression, disappointment, and anxiety. Many of us attempt to push down and put aside these feelings, trying to mask them over with the season’s joy and happiness. But the feelings are still there, still prevalent and intertwined in our lives.

For me, loneliness is one of the biggies in my life this time of year. Some people think that my loneliness means that I am alone. Sometimes that’s a good thing – we need to be alone, to be by ourselves and away from people, but that’s not loneliness, that’s solitude. Loneliness is deeper than that. Loneliness is darker than that. For me, it’s like sitting in a room at night by yourself and feeling like it will never become light again. It’s being invisible in a room full of people.

If you’re like me, the Christmas season’s loneliness can eat away at any sort of joy we may be able to muster up.  It’s difficult because this is a season of togetherness – family and friends coming together and eating big meals, opening presents, and playing games.  And we, the lonely, may be part of these gatherings, but we feel apart from them.  There is something deep within us that is hurt.  There is something deep within us that longs for true connection.

We can put on a happy face and carry on lively conversations, but we are split within our souls because we know deep down that there is something less than happy and lively.  We smile widely for the pictures, laugh loudly at the jokes, and carry on the conversations.  But within us is another person who wants to scream out for someone to truly notice us.

In truth, our loneliness comes out of a desire for an intimate relationship with someone else.  This intimacy isn’t sexual in any way – it’s much deeper than that.  Intimacy is closeness and familiarity.  Intimacy is private and personal.  Intimacy is vulnerability.  Our loneliness cries out for intimacy on an emotional and spiritual level that most take for granted.  Our loneliness desires fulfillment from being with other people on a soul level.

Sandburg’s words ring true for us, the lonely. We would suffer hunger, pain, want, shame, and failure all for intimacy – true intimacy – with another person.

As the darkest, longest night of the year comes upon us, let us continue to cry out to God, “I am lonely and troubled! Save me from my sadness!” May God hear our cries for comfort in our loneliness, grief, depression, disappointment, and anxiety. And may we find respite on this darkest night.

[Many churches offer Blue Christmas services which recognize and speak to these issues – you can do a quick search to find one locally. If you’d like to speak with someone about these feelings, you can contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. You’ll hear an automated message that will ask a few brief questions, then your call will be routed to a local Lifeline network center where your call will be answered by a trained worker who will listen to you, understand how your problem is affecting you, provide support, and get you the help you need.]

much love. sheth.


Truth: Like, Agape.

Apologies up front: I’m sorry this week’s post is short, but I have a ton of papers to write for school.  Maybe next week will be better…

I’m wrestling with what it means to love someone, specifically the agape love which extends to all people, whether family members or distant strangers.  But there’s a contradiction in my delivery. On one hand it’s really easy – I can love everyone around me without question, without reason, without expectation. On the other hand it’s really difficult – I can’t love everyone around me, all the time, without reason.

I fall headlong into agape because I’m called to do so – I believe God desires this from us in this world. We’re called to love the poor, the migrant, the queer; the rich, the patriot, the white; the happy, the injured, the vile.  It’s entirely possible to do this, and I’ve witnessed people who can do it without question.

But I also fall out of agape because I’m human and petty.  I mean, do I really have to love the smelly, the bothersome, the ugly?  Do I have to love the people I don’t get along with, the people I don’t agree with, the people who annoy the hell out of me?  Do I have to love chaotic middle school youth and snotty-Kleenex carrying old people?

As someone who frequently uses the phrase “I don’t have to like them, but I have to love them”, I find myself at an impasse.  Am I truly, completely loving the people I don’t like?  Am I doing as Jesus did those many years ago?  Am I seeing Jesus in the face of these people I love but don’t like? Could I do that to Jesus?  If I can’t love them and like them, should I love at all?

Perhaps this is the point of it all – I can’t do it alone.  I can’t possibly love the people I don’t like without God’s help.  I can’t possibly love the people I do like without God’s help.  Love is difficult – agape, pragma, or philia –it’s all challenging and frustrating at times, and entirely impossible without the help from my Creator.

God help us all to love as you have loved, forgive us when we fail, and give us mounds of grace as we try to figure it all out.

much love. sheth.

Truth: We’re Both Right.

My Facebook friend list is a crazy mix of people that I love.  There are the politically conservative and religiously liberal, there are libertarians, a few anarchists, a hippie or two, a few yoga instructors and plenty of cowboys.  There’s some who love their kids, some who treat their pets as kids, and some who don’t like kids at all.  There’s retirees, teens who have yet to start working, a few unemployed, some who stay at home while their partners work, and a lot who have a regular job…or two…or three.  There are Baptists, Presbyterians, Lutherans, Catholics, Methodists, Non-Denoms, Atheists, Pentecostals, and Agnostics.  When I get on Facebook I have the opportunity to see a veritable cross-section of America.

When something ‘big’ happens in the world (terrorists, politics, sports, church) I am blessed to see all sides of the story – those who are for it and against it; those rooting for their home team while cursing the away team; those standing with and those opposing against.  I see arguments that are fact-based, faith-based, emotionally-based, and the occasional pot-stirrer who just wants to make everyone upset.

I’ve often wondered what it would be like if my Facebook friends ended up in the same room together because it’s such a varied list of people, but my wondering often turns into anxiety because I don’t know if it would be such a great idea.  This side opposes that side; that group hates this group; this person is holding a 20 year-old grudge against that person; I’m right and you’re all wrong.

And they all talk a big game on Facebook – ‘I’d show those damn snowflakes what real oppression is’; ‘If I see him again, I’m going to punch him in the face’; ‘Those people have no idea what they’re doing to me and my family.’  If they all got together in a ballroom at the Hilton, I’m afraid the niceties would end and all hell would break loose in about 38 seconds.

I think we’re all pretty angry with each other.  We’re angry for both valid and invalid reasons.  We’re angry because the other isn’t of the same mindset as we are.  We’re angry because we’re losing things that are important to us.  We’re angry because we’ve missed out on things for so long.  We’re angry because others are suffering, others are winning, others are inflicting harm.  We’re angry because we’re seeing a few lines of text on the screen and assuming the rest of the story.

Five years ago I don’t think I’d have been this reluctant to bring all these people together – not because my list of friends has changed, but because my friends have changed (as have I).  There was a time when we could disagree online and in person, but still treat one another with respect and graciousness.

I think we’ve blurred the lines between online interactions and real-world interactions, sacrificing civility in the process.  We no longer listen before we speak.  We no longer discuss things.  We are no longer flexible in our politics, theologies, or standards.  We can’t not say something.  We assume, we fill in the story, we take sides before knowing the facts.  We have allowed the meaning of ‘fact’ to be redefined.  We have drawn our battle lines, made our teams, and have set our feet firmly on the ground that we believe to be right (and to hell with those who don’t agree with us).


I know how to fix this problem and make us all more loving, civil, and nicer to one another.  It’s fixed by doing it.  We need to recognize that each one of us is important, each one of us is valid, and we are together on this planet.  Truthfully, we know this and we know how to do this.  We all have it in us to be better to one another, to be more loving to one another, to be nicer to one another.  There’s no magic formula, no three-step process, no seminar that needs to be attended before we can do it.  We know how to be better than we are – we need to act on our knowledge.

The fighting, arguing, and yelling will only make the rifts between us grow wider and deeper.  Being uncivil because they’re being uncivil will only make it worse.  By all means, disagree with one another!  Just don’t be an ass in the process.  Hold on to your beliefs, but don’t be afraid to let go of them if you need to.  Keep an open mind, but make sure you filter what’s going into it.  Understand others.  Empathize with them.  Think before you speak or type.  Get off social media and have actual discussions with people.  Have conversations with people you disagree with face-to-face.  Be kind.  Be civil.  Be nice.  Be loving.  Be vulnerable.  Be the other.

May we understand who they are, who we are, and that we are all in this thing together.  May we converse more, love more, and understand more.

much love. sheth.

Truth: Happy (Radiantly).

“Describe a time you were radiantly happy.
What do you value most in that memory?”

I came across this journal prompt yesterday, and I’m not sure how to write about it because truthfully I’m not wired that way anymore.  I admire people who can show their emotions, express themselves freely, and others around them don’t have to guess what is going on.  Me, I’m more of a wildcard, and others around me are continually left guessing as to what I’m feeling.

I wish I could express myself freely and have those ‘radiant’ feelings of joy and happiness, those times when I can cry, laugh, and weep.  I see people around me who are so very emotive and expressive, and I get a little jealous.  Somewhere deep in my mind, I suppose I’ve relinquished the thought that I can be radiantly happy.  Perhaps out of a fear of expecting bad to follow good I’ve denied myself the chance to experience this feeling, and instead have opted to remain staid and demure.  It’s safer this way.  There’s less chance of getting hurt if I can control this side of the ups and downs of life, right?

As I laid in bed last night I peered through my past, and attempted to find a moment when I experienced happiness in this way, but most of the ‘normal’ happiness-inducing moments of my life have been clouded by sorrow.  Finding out I was going to be a father was over-shadowed by divorce papers; finishing my bachelor’s degree was marred by a severely broken leg; a promising relationship was drowned out by unemployment; seminary has been a roller coaster of financial worries.  It’s not that I haven’t had moments that would call out in my life to be radiantly happy, but life has also beaten me down a bit and has left me a bit jaded.

I was talking with some people yesterday about this journal prompt and I told them that I don’t have a lot of moments of radiance because I don’t give myself permission to feel that way anymore.  I’m scared to do it because I’m scared of the bad things that may follow.  It’s silly to live my life in fear (especially a fear of this), but I’ve done it for so long that I don’t really know how to do it any differently.  I don’t know how to be ‘radiantly happy’.

Thinking about it, I realize I have a lot of work to do on myself to understand that it’s okay to feel emotions, to enjoy them, to enjoy life with all its ups-and-downs.  I have to figure out how to find radiant happiness (and the moments that provoke it).  I have to let go of my fears and worries, and just learn to enjoy life.  But I also have to understand that maybe, just maybe, I’m not a ‘radiantly-happy’ kind of person.  Maybe I don’t experience things in that way, and I need to be okay with that.

Whichever way I discover who/how I am, I pray that God can crack my emotions open, that my life can be changed, filtered, cleaned, and re-worked to become the man the Creator made me to become.  I pray that God can help us all to express ourselves in ways that others can understand, and that we can share these emotions with others in our lives.

much love. sheth.


Truth: Communion.

Last night a group of my friends and I came together to send off one of our fellow seminarians who has been called elsewhere.  It’s a challenging situation, and many hearts were heavy because we didn’t want to see our friend leave – we had struggled together through classes and life, sharing in both the good and bad that comes with each new day – it’s like losing a family member.

Our friend’s request before we went our separate ways was for us to break bread together – to take communion as a group.  As my friend talked about why she felt at peace about her calling, a few of us prepared the meal we were about to take, and it was quickly placed before the group.  As seminarians we sort of hemmed and hawed at who should perform this sacred rite: partially because we may have felt unworthy to do such a thing, and partially because we held fast to the belief that only those who are ordained could serve communion.

Most of us who were present had been through our worship class and had learned how to serve communion – the words to be said were firmly in our hearts and minds and the movements were still present in our muscle memory; it is safe to say that we were prepared enough to do this act.  But none of us were willing to step up and do it.  Our friend who was leaving somewhat reluctantly agreed that she would serve the bread and the wine.

And it was the most beautiful and heartfelt meal I have had in seminary.  In those moments, no words of institution were spoken as we all knew them.  No big and flowing actions were completed as the bread was fractured and the wine was poured.  In that moment we were a group of friends – a group of believers – sharing in the love, grace, and beauty of God’s amazing gift to us.  I recognized Jesus in the voices around me as the bread was passed, and I recognized Jesus in the hands as the cup was presented to each of us.

There are moments in church when we say certain things and do certain things to refresh our memories of why we’re doing those things.  We are presented with beautiful prayers and words to mark the importance and full information of why we’re partaking in those actions.  We do all this stuff because it returns us through history to the very earliest churches who met in homes; small groups of men and women gathered together to hear the Word, to offer up themselves, and to eat together.

Truthfully, I believe that’s what made last night so beautiful – we were doing exactly what Christ had instructed us to do, and we were doing it as the early church had done.  There were no boundaries between anyone and the meal and there were no special words to be spoken; last night we were the church.  We were a group of people madly in love with one another, and madly in love with God, sharing a meal together to remember who we are, who loves us, and who our brothers and sisters are in our eyes and in God’s eyes.

I thank God for my friend who is preparing to leave – I thank God for her wisdom, her courage, her strength, her understanding, her compassion and love for everyone around her, and for her willingness to discern what the Divine is saying and to heed that voice.  And I thank God for her desire to break bread with us before she leaves – this moment has solidified our relationship, and I know that no matter where God chooses to place her (or me, or any of us), I know that she and I (and we) are connected forever.

That’s what communion is about – it connects me to God, and me to those who are enjoying it with me.  It brings about the remembrance of the beautiful sacrifice of Jesus, it solidifies our relationship with the Creator, and it unites people who are continually torn apart by society and life.

May God bless and bring peace to my friend’s heart (and mine, and yours), and may we continually remember those beautiful moments of eating together with our (and God’s) loved ones.

much love. sheth.

Truth: Comprehension.

My grandmother’s frail hands slightly shook, uncontrolled, as they waivered over the opened Bible in front of her.  She looked at me, then back to the text, and then back at me.  I could see the frustration in her eyes: she was frustrated because she wanted to talk to me and ask me questions about the book, but she was also frustrated by the book itself.  She pushed her weakened voice until a tiny sentence came out, ragged and quiet, “How do I read this?”

In her 95 years my grandma encountered the Bible many times – she had been to church for nearly all those years, had a close relationship with God, and fostered the love of her Creator in her children and grandchildren.  Over the last few years of her life she occasionally admitted to me that she had struggled in reading and understanding the Bible and all it entailed.  Her beliefs never waivered much, but she wrestled with comprehending the words she read.

In that moment as we sat together in the nursing home, I desperately wanted to say something profound and inspirational to her.  I wanted to say something that would console her in her final weeks on this earth; I thought for a second and blurted out, “Keep doing what you’re doing.  Read, ask questions, pray, re-read, pray, ask questions.  And repeat that again and again.”  I smiled and held her hand, but I knew my answer wasn’t entirely profound, and definitely not inspirational.  I knew that my words frustrated her even more.

It was hard to guide my grandmother at that moment in how to read the Bible because she knew the Bible – she lived out its pages all her life as she fed the hungry and gave to the needy (Proverbs 31:20), raised a good family (Proverbs 31:28), encouraged her friends (Hebrews 10:25), talked with others about God (Mark 16:15), brought my grandpa utter joy and love (Proverbs 12:4), built a strong household (Proverbs 14:1), and tried to understand the Word (Proverbs 1:7).  She wasn’t just a hearer of the word, but a doer (James 1:22).

My grandma sought after God and found what she was looking for in spite of her doubts, fears, and frustrations.  She may have thought she wasn’t doing this Christianity thing right, but she was doing it exactly the way it should be done.  She plowed forward and fought to find God so she could hear that still, small voice in the deserts of her life.  She professed her love of God with her voice, with her smile, with her love for others.  She understood the Bible more than she thought she did, and taught many others around her how to understand it as well.

Truthfully, I would do well to heed the same words I gave my grandma and act as she did because I, too, struggle to understand the Bible.  Despite the classes I’ve taken in (and out) of seminary, I often feel that I don’t know much of anything, and I often wonder if I’m doing anything right.  I suppose part of my struggle is that I want to do everything correctly and honor what I read before I put it into practice, but I’m putting it into practice and not perfection.  I’m going to screw up, I’m going to make mistakes and errors (a lot – trust me, I will), but thankfully God gives me (and you, and my grandma) lots of leeway to try and figure it out as we go.

May we read, ask questions, pray, re-read, ask questions, pray, and re-read the word of God until we comprehend the tiniest of details, and may we act according to what we read, even if we don’t understand fully how to do it.

much love. sheth.