When people ask me to summarize my religion, I tell them:
I believe in infinite potential.
I can’t imagine a future in which we disappear forever, or a future where we are stuck within set parameters, never to exceed past a certain point. The idea of godhood make senses to me, under those circumstances. How could we not achieve godhood at some point, if we have forever to get there?
But sometimes…that point seems infinitely far away.
I don’t feel anything like a god right now.
I am mortal, and weak, and spiteful and envious and mean when I know I shouldn’t be. I can’t control circumstances sometimes, no matter how hard I try. As a parent–not a Heavenly one, but just a physical one–sometimes I feel like I’m totally failing.
How am I anything like my Heavenly Parents?
How in the world am I ever going to get to that point?
But God knows me better than I know me. I was a little terrified of parenthood. Like I’ve said before, I don’t “get” kids. I don’t have the patience. They don’t follow my perfectly laid out schedules, they throw monkey wrenches in everything, they make messes.
But God–my Heavenly Father–knows me better than I know me.
He saw me take on parenthood, and he said, “Watch this.”
And I’m starting to better understand Him.
He is, after all, our spiritual parent, and I am a parent as well now, albeit a physical one.
Sometimes my kids want to eat too much sugar, and I say, “That isn’t good for you, all things in moderation,” and DING–
–y’know, Heavenly Father says that to me too, when I take on too many projects and swear I can handle them all, despite what He says. When He tells me to slow down and I ignore Him, I’m not much different from my three year old running around the corner and smacking into his brother, despite my warnings.
Sometimes my kids say mean things to their brothers, and I say, “That isn’t a nice thing to say, and it isn’t even true,” and DING–
–that’s probably what Heavenly Father is thinking when I gossip or jump to judgements about people. I love all my kids, and hearing them say hurtful things about each other hurts me too. I made that kid! Stop being mean! And I imagine Heavenly Father feels that sort of pain constantly.
Sometimes my kids say, “But why? But why??” when all they want is something that is terribly bad for them (jumping off things, swallowing something that isn’t food, you know), and I say, “I can’t explain it because you won’t understand, you’ll just have to trust me,” and DING–
–Heavenly Father says that to me all the time when I simply don’t understand his plan for me.
Obviously, my plan is so much better. Everything is clean and organized and nothing hurts in my plan. I have it scheduled. I have it color coded. I clearly have all the information and this is clearly the best way.
But His plan will get me so much farther. And He knew that I would realize that when I started this grand adventure, even if I didn’t.
Just like me telling my kids not to jump off ladders will keep them safe, His plan keeps me safe. He sees things and knows things and understands things that I do not. He understands my strengths and weaknesses and needs better than I do.
Being a parent has brought me so much closer to God, despite my shortcomings and my failures.
I am certainly not perfect. But I’m trying. And I understand better where He comes from, and what He’s trying to do with me.
He is guiding me.
And I can choose to throw a tantrum because it’s not my way, like a child, and sometimes I do…I can choose to disobey, and get hurt or spiritually hungry…or I can choose to grow up a little and take steps, even if they’re tiny ones, closer to who and what and where He is.
Our comprehension of reality is so limited right now.
Humanity as a whole is still trying to master the basics, like being kind to the people next to us. We are children, perhaps even toddlers or infants, in the grand scheme of eternity.
But the great thing is we have so much potential.
We know where we are going.
We know what we can be.
And gosh, I can’t wait to surpass the limits of this life, to improve myself to the point where I can look at Heavenly Father and say, “Now I really understand.”