One of the things I find myself doing more and more lately, is observing how I Perceive & Understand the world around me. It goes with saying that my Perceptions affect my ability to truly learn and change. This is I am sure closely related to my desire to see beyond the Fixed Horizons I have built up over the years. Most of these fixed Horizons to my dismay are constructed more of fiction than fact, although for many years I have been loath to admit it.
This for me has been most acute in the area of Theology, which for many years I treated as an exact science rather than the art form it really is. There is a reason why the Theology Department at a liberal arts college, is not found in the Science Building. Because Theology uses some of the same tools of logic and language, I just Assumed it carried with it the same weight.
So let me tell you what changed, I simply stopped treating the study of an Infinite God as a Fixed Horizon. More importantly I stopped being fearful of questions that challenged by heretofore untouchable understanding and perceptions. If there is one thing I am most thankful for in this Post Modern Age of Derrida, Rob Bell, Peter Rollins, and a whole host of new thinkers. Is the courage by which these women and men ask questions that challenge Orthodoxy which holds the idea and assumption that it alone has the right of succession. Because after all only the Old Questions and the assumptive answers discovered in ages past, can rightly be called the Truth. It reminds me of how Dear Leader is chosen in North Korea, did anyone doubt it wasn’t going to be a Jong boy child?
Of course these types of environments are dangerous to challenge but without any credible threat other than a seven letter word (heretic), the questions are out of the bag.With the result that our passionate pursuit of God might actually begin to look like something, more than just a fortified castle with moat and burning oil included.
Let me give you an example from the other day, I had always assumed back in my Calvinist day, that Adam died spiritually in the Garden with Eve. Then one day I heard someone ask a question that would challenge all my Fixed Horizons. What if He only died Physically and it was His perceptions that changed His ability to see God clearly? Wow then man being born to die and go to hell was just a perception based on an assumption, pretending to be a Fixed Horizon.
What would my theology look like if God still thought it was all Good and the process is one of restoration, rather than a courtroom with God demanding payment for being offended?
What if God is Love?
What if I was partly or completely wrong?
So my New Perceptions and Assumptions are no more fixed than theirs, and are based on the Fluid Horizon of What if. I have discovered and infinite God there who Loves me, a God who must be forever discovered, Horizon over Horizon over Horizon! I have discovered faith again and the actual need for grace in the face of my ignorance, with eyes wide open.