Imago Mei

Today, I ran across an insightful quote by Anne Lamott that she credits to her friend, Father Tom.

"You can safely assume that you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do."

My initial reaction was a laugh, but then the quote sort of hung with me. Then it drilled down deep inside with razor sharp conviction.

Rhonda-of-the-Comic-Strip-Pantyhose once told me that the easiest way not to have to love someone was to demonize them. After all, we aren't commanded in Scripture to love demons. Just people.

Which if you think about it too long really, really sucks.

I have a long list of people I don't love. In fact, the only people I know that I actually love easily are those who are interesting, kind, funny and haven't hurt me.

Whiners, liars, cruel people...they are definitely on the "don't love" list. And don't even get me started on the drivers with snotty little bumper stickers that seem to be the Christian equivalent of flipping people off.

Should I keep going? Does anyone actually miss those who killed themselves blowing up the World Trade Center? What about skinheads?

Isn't the concept of actually being able to love all people everywhere really, truly way too much to ask?

Maybe that's why the whole "love your neighbor" verse actually says neighbor instead of whole wide world. I barely have the capacity to love the people who live next door to me, much less the people I'd rather not think about. That whole "God so loved the world" thing...that has to be God's job. Because quite frankly, I'm not up for it.

Thanks Anne.

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Maira Gall