Posted by: Adam Roper | May 1, 2009

god/love: a case study

Yesterday I wrote a poem in two parts, completely randomly while I was sitting on my deck. It was a beautiful sunny day yesterday, but I had spent the greater part of my day wandering around the house thinking/worrying a lot about the past four months. Somehow in that 9 or so hour period this poem came to me in a really unexplainable way. This proves a theory I’ve had for awhile: That sometimes worship is not so much us offering our gift to God, but God offering our gift to us. How else are we to make sense of some of the more difficult things in life? By worrying them to death yet never finding resolution? The way God works through our artistic expression is, indeed, a loving and mysterious act of creativity.

That said, here is the poem I wrote in two parts with some commentary.

Regarding Love

Dear Love,

Now that you’re here
you’re never here at all-
at my door or in my window,
a photograph under a kitchen magnet,
a hand-written note on the fridge.

With this poem I tried to express how I am feeling about love these days. I fully realize the fact that I have a lot of love in my life, and a lot of people think highly of me. Even so, I don’t always feel the presence of this love. Maybe community is an everyday thing, something we have to experience to some degree every day in our lives. This whole concept of the Five Love Languages comes from this idea: that love is expressed differently for everyone, and love is expressed in many different ways. As people we need to know we are loved, but we also need real reminders of the fact that love exists- we need to feel it.

Regarding God

A response:
I don’t have one at the moment
against all my sarcasm and cynicism
at the movements of God-
I question things I don’t understand, and
scorn things I pretend to.

In the past four months I’ve experience a lot of disappointment and missed opportunities (as well as having a lot of really good things present in my life). Because of some of the more seemingly ironic things I developed a sarcastic and cynical view towards God. I feel with every missed job opportunity, every concert I can’t attend, and every missed chanced for community was a sure sign that God is being sarcastic, trying to spite me because I can’t seem to get the point. To be honest, this is a really unfortunate idea to believe. God is not up there trying to make a joke out of my life, though it feels that way.

With difficult seasons it gets hard to have faith that God is in control. We’d rather accuse God of being spiteful rather than take a moment to think about the truth of where God is working in our lives. I have two responses to my struggle to understand God’s intentions: 1) the honest and legitimate approach of ‘questioning things I don’t understand’, and 2) Scorning things I think I understand so well, so I can feel justified, so I can be sarcastic- really, on a deeper level, expressing my insecurity in immature ways, rather than seeking to be honest about my insecurity and confusion.

And being confused by God is a perfectly human expression. It comes through most of the Psalms- the writers who have experienced God working in a certain way, then when God stops working in a certain way they question why. It’s an interesting thing to think about. Are meant to know exactly what God is like, and claim to know how to predict how He works, learning all the right prayers we know will pique His interest? Or are we meant to dwell in the mystery of God, knowing all He feels towards us is a deeply unexplainable grace?

Thanks for reading. You can read the full poem at This Artist Life.




  1. “I question things I don’t understand, and scorn things I pretend to.”

    Great lines.

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