Sunday, June 1, 2014

lukewarm for the soul. [doubt&devotion]

Welcome to another edition of 
Doubt&Devotion.
Kate from The Florkens and I are so glad to have you here, sharing your heart, and engaging in conversations about doubt, devotion, and all that's in between. 
Mr. Thomas & Me
You are invited to join us every Sunday for some talk on faith, religion, any and everything that lies heavy on your heart. We'll both post about our current struggles then at the bottom we'll invite you to join in the conversation either with a post of your own or in the comments section.

Our link-up goes live today! 
Oh how we're thrilled to have you. 
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Our shower dial is polarized. Most shower dials aren't, they give you a spectrum where you can adjust to cold, little bit cool, warm, a little bit warm, almost hot, hot. Ours skipped the spectrum update and is, well, polarized. It's freezing your ass off cold or hot as freakin' hell hot. That's it. Ass-less cold. Hellish hot.

I always forget that our shower dial is polarized. Always -every single morning sort of always. I turn to that spot that seems to say comfortably warm, let the water heat, then hop in. And burn in the hot as hellness of it. In one swift movement I jump out of the stream and flip it to cooler. But cooler means cold because, well, polarization. There's no such thing as lukewarm, or simply warm, in our shower. 

Lukewarm, now that I haven't got it coming through my pipes, got the short end of the stick. 
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When I got my tattoo, everyone wanted to know how my mom felt about it. Her friends, my friends, they wanted her to react. And, well, she did in a mellow, warm, way that moms do things. 

She said it's feminine. It's a piece of her dad and her life on her body. It actually suits her in ways that seemed impossible. Would she get one? No, not so public and easy to see. Does she hate it? No, it's not a love, but an appreciated quirk in her (not so) little girl. 

Her friends, my friends, they were disappointed. Her reaction was supposed to be BIG, bold, obviously emotional. And yet, she was warm. 
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It's not within our comfort zone: the spectrum of opinion. It's uncomfortable to say, I don't know where I stand on that. We have to know in order to be grown-up, in order to have convictions, in order to love God or to not. But do we? 

I don't know how I feel about all the issues surrounding gay marriage or gun control or abortion or tattoos or alcohol or church. Because there are so many. What I do know is I'm learning to say that I don't know. That I'm a Jesus-loving, God-fearing woman who just doesn't know how this is all supposed to look and work and feel. What do I know is that I'm allowed not to know. And, well, that opens the spectrum deep and wide (see what I did there?). 
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A sorority sister in college was worried about how she did on an exam because after ten weeks of studying the politics of the body, she had a view with more facets than her engagement ring. After completing our final we walked to coffee. Over steaming lattes she said, "Amber I wrote my opinion and it was from both sides. That's wrong, I know, but instead of sticking to a single view, I wanted to show that I know the world in all shades of grey." (We graduated before those books hit the stands.)

I don't know how she scored on that final -I do know she graduated with a degree-, but it didn't matter because she tapped into something profound -we know the world in so many ways, shades, shapes. And, quite possibly, we know it along the spectrum rather than from a pole. Maybe all the issues, all our experiences, all the surrounding circumstances and options feel warm and undefined. 
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Our culture, our faith, our approach to everything is supposed to be the same as the Thomas shower dial -hot or cold, fast or slow, up or down (see what I did there -again?). And, well, I don't think it's good for us. 

Instead of jumping into the hold, fast, or up, we could simmer, gain speed, grow. While there's little space for lukewarm just now, we can make it. Let's bask in the process of making our opinion rather than planting firm in one camp ready to fight off the other. 
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8 comments:

  1. I swear sometimes when you write things I feel like you are talking just to me. Oh, the beauty of blogging. Thank you for this friend, goodness knows I needed these words today.

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  2. This is so true. There are things I know for sure (God is love, God is good, Jesus died for us), and there are so many things that I'm not sure of and have different opinions on and quite often have no opinion on. It's so good to hear that my fellow Christian women can feel this way too.x

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  3. I love this. As a christian college student, people expected me to think A Certain Way about gay marriage, abortion, etc. And you're right.. I don't know ALL THE THINGS. But I'm trying.

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  4. Hi nail head, this is the hammer Amber just hit you with.

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  5. Is the nail head in my couch or headboard? Because goodness knows I LOVE THOSE DAMN DETAILS.

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  6. It's so hard when there's a Way we're supposed to feel yet the completeness of my opinion just isn't there at all. I think it's the trying that's so much more important than anything else because it pushes the need to pursue -something that we don't do as often as we like to think!

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  7. I love the way you've said this Lucy. There's things we KNOW. Yes. Then there's the things that are in that gray area and, well, they might forever be there... And that's all good in the hood. :)

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  8. Well, in fact, I AM talking to you, you silly goose... :) I'm so glad that you're here and you're such a kindred spirit because we all need those in life!

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