This Week’s Quotation:
Question: What is the chief end of man?
Answer: Man's chief end is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.
(Shorter Catechism of the Presbyterian Church)
I was raised in the Presbyterian Church, and after graduating from college, I enrolled in Princeton Theological Seminary to study for the Presbyterian ministry. After graduating from Princeton, I found a church in Tacoma, Washington, that wanted me as its minister. But then, for various reasons, the committee of ministers that had sponsored my candidacy did not think I would be a good fit for the ministry and declined to ordain me, so the church and I parted ways.
But I would not allow my somewhat less than happy departure from the Presbyterian Church to prevent me from acknowledging and even celebrating the truth of many of its teachings, particularly the one in the Catechism above. Yes, we are here "to glorify God, and to enjoy Him forever." And also to enjoy Her forever!
And I have come to realize that we glorify God by being God. It is not some separate and distant God that we try to glorify, but the God Reality that we are.
We are here as representatives of God on earth, and we incarnated on earth in physical form to "dress and keep the garden," as stated in the Bible. We are here to bless nature so that it brings forth its abundance and this earth project thrives on every level.
Yes, we are here to enjoy God. The Creator did not bring forth human beings to suffer and lead lives of misery. This is something we have brought on ourselves by making wrong choices. It is not a sin, as some have suggested, to be happy. In fact, we were created to be happy; it is our responsibility to be happy. And happiness comes by simply being who we are: Creator Beings made "in the image and likeness of God."
About Open Windows
We, the authors of this blog, dedicate it to the transparent exploration of the world’s sacred scripture and enlightened spiritual thought. We believe that the original inspiration of all faiths comes from a common source, named and revered in a myriad of ways. With that understanding, the innumerable symbols, beliefs, and practices of faith cease to divide. They become open windows to a common reality that inspires and unifies us. We find deeper insight and nourishment in our own faith and from the expression of faith from others.
We hope these weekly quotations and meditations speak to your heart and soul.