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Wednesday, July 31, 2013

What I Think About God

by Eliana (bio)

Image by Seyed Mostafa Zamani

I had to speak in sacrament meeting on Father's Day. It was my husband's third such assignment in his seven years of fatherhood, so I couldn't complain. I decided to talk about Heavenly Father rather than the more commonly discussed earthly variety. I read a great talk by Elder Holland called The Grandeur of God that will make you want to think more about the subject after reading this post.

I once knew a man with the kindest eyes. Pale blue, with deep crow's feet that smiled and moved along with the rest of his face. I've always considered these eyes to be what looking at Heavenly Father would be like—not the penetrating gaze of Elder Scott that always makes me feel like I've done something wrong. More like a wise, worn man who knows me and knows everything and is trying to help me figure it out too.

This same man once told me something that Lowell Bennion, educator and writer and philosopher, said or wrote.

"God is at least as good as the best person you know."

Of course, Google has no results for such a search phrase and I only have a notation written in a notebook of this quote, so take it for what you will. But I've found this to be a good thought exercise, especially when realizing that I haven't lived up to what I know and what I should be. The best people we know don't want to keep us down but want to help us be better. Heavenly Father is certainly at least that good.

Finally, about women. Not matter what anyone says, in the church or out, I have no worries about what God actually thinks about women. Any ridiculous policy or cringe worthy commentary? Whatever. I can sound blasé about it right now though at the moment I might get worked up. But I know for a fact that God is not behind any of those things, not even the ones from church leaders. They may be steps on a path or imperfect men doing their best—fine. Heavenly Father doesn't think women are less than. I can guarantee you that. Anyone who tries to tell you otherwise, no matter their sly way of saying it, isn't right.

Years ago, right after my brother got out of a year in rehab, we were talking on a long car ride. He wasn't sure what he believed and what he thought about life. In a moment of inspired grace, I asked him if he knew that God loved him. He thought for a while, then said he did believe in God. I told my troubled little brother that such a knowledge was a great starting place.

I still believe that. Knowing that Heavenly Father knows me and loves me is enough, even at the times when it is all I am sure of.

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