It’s another beautiful day in Vancouver, the fountains at Lost Lagoon soothe me, the beauty of the mountains and trees amaze me, the sun warms me, I breathe in deeply the fresh air invigorates me. My belly is full, thanks to a wife who loves me. I sit here without fear. This is Canada, we love peace & simplicity. The turtles are sunning themselves on the log, a swan glides gracefully by, these are the reassurances of the serenity that I have found. The question arises, “Why do I need God?” An answer does not immediately come. I think for a minute, the wind picks up a bit, swallow races by my head, effortlessly defying gravity. A crow makes it’s presence known. Could I not just be content with the natural beauties of this world and leave God out of it? There are these things in this world, be amazed, enjoy them and leave it at that. The crow has found two peanuts, he is greedy, so he works hard to fit them both into his beak, he is unsuccessful. He stands in danger of losing everything as three smaller birds hop towards him. In the end, he takes one, and hides it by a lamppost, then dashes back to grab the remaining morsel and fly off. What’s wrong with greed? The crow knows that he needs food or he dies, he cares nothing for other birds, and why should he, is not life about survival? The tour guide Dan stops by, he has people from St Louis, Virginia, & Edmonton, now I am learning all about Stanley Park, evidently, it took 70 years to build the sea wall, each rock laid by hand. Dan is good, he has everybody laughing, it’s clear he loves his job. Why do we love? Love seems to mess with this idea of survival as the primary thing. I know of people who for love have forfeited their own lives. My mind drifts back to my original question “why do I need God?” A beautiful woman just sat down one bench over, she’s delicate, yet appears strong, she has a beauty about her that draws me in, the breeze loosens her hair, a soft hand reaches up to address the erring lock. I want to imagine certain pleasures with her, a man comes up and asks her for the time, does he really want to know the time? She’s writing now, I imagine she’s writing wonderful things about me. Faithfulness, that’s what I start thinking about, a picture of my wife flashes through my mind. What’s so bad about unfaithfulness? Back to my question — It’s the story really, I want a meta-narrative, a grand story that helps me find the proper place for greed, for love, and for unfaithfulness. A framework that helps me identify a right path and a wrong path. Ultimate meaninglessness as a grand story and the human as the central figure of that story leave me feeling bloated and hollow. I want to believe that life is so much more than the material world, so much more than me. I want to believe in things like redemption, hope, and happy endings. I want the beauty of nature that I am experiencing today to point me in a direction toward someone, someone greater than us all. Perhaps this is why I need God.
Our world is full of injustice. None of us can escape its grasp. Sooner or later, we all experience a gut punch, backstab, or letdown.