I was raised and came of age in a religiously intense community. It is easy to remember the awareness of how “special” we were given the study, discussion, and practice around everything Divinity related. Even from my rear-view mirror, I recognise the knowledge each member of the community carried within their minds and hearts.
In hindsight, there was an element of twisted thinking on my part. My initial assumption rested on the premise that my actions support my standing in the community and Divinity. Every morning, Life reminds me how false my assumption is.
As the sun peaked through the buildings this morning, I was confronted with a clear reality. Every individual in the community was a beneficiary. There were no shadows on the undeserving. There were no filters blocking, or special mirrors directing the warmth and nurturing benefits the sun brings. As I reflect on what is visible and experienced by all, I find myself revisiting my accepted truths.
Life never revolves around me. Life is found in the relationships I have with my communities and Divinity. I have no insider standing, except as a member of the family. Old questions and answers replay themselves; “So where does that leave our proud Jewish insider claims and counterclaims? Canceled? Yes, canceled. What we’ve learned is this: God does not respond to what we do; we respond to what God does.” (Romans 3.27)
Actions matter, though not for the reason I initially thought. My actions do not support my standing. My standing was given to me before I even knew I existed. My actions do express my agreement with love, compassion, and community values. The audiences for my inner voice being expressed through my choices are myself, others, and even Divinity. My voice is transparent, immediate, and truthful.
So where does this leave me? I deserve an opportunity to express my views of Divinity’s gifts. With these in hand, I am responsible and accountable for what follows. It is an opportunity every Divine child has. Divinity offers me love, compassion, and support, however, it is my choice.