The Norman Transcript

Religion

April 5, 2013

Sharing God’s love with others

NORMAN — My grandmother, who lived to be 96, spent the last four years of her life in a nursing home just blocks from where we lived. She lived across the hall from the pop machine and would ask us when we arrived, “Got 50 cents? Bring me a Pepsi.” That and a baked potato every afternoon when my mother would visit pretty much set her up.

My mother’s daily presence and those two tasty treats were the highlights of her days in those years.

Many of her fellow residents found similar pleasure in the monthly visit from dogs from a nonprofit agency that provided companion animals for differently abled folks. People who stared in silence most of the time would come alive at the nuzzle of a cold, wet nose. People who no longer had words seemed to communicate thoughts with these furry friends. And people whose smile muscles seemed completely dead would miraculously reanimate as a small dog was placed in their laps.

There’s something about the relationship between people and animals that’s hard to articulate and, for me, points to God’s presence. We theological types spend so much of our lives trying to explain how God works and explain what love is and explain what this or that word really means in scripture.

Sometimes we ought to sit back and say, “Some of this faith journey stuff is a mystery, and we must be at peace with the mystery.” Some of it we just can’t explain. God’s love is nearly impossible to explain, even though many of us work in places where books that try to explain it line the shelves.

How do you explain the love of a being you can’t see or whose existence you can’t prove? It’s about as easy as explaining why you love that kid you’re raising or that guy you married … or that dog who has climbed into bed next to you the last 10 years and whose contented sigh is the last thing you hear before you drift off.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Religion
  • Hnsen Luger Kate Hansen still riding the Olympic cloud

    Not many people can say they actually accomplished their lifetime dreams. Even less can say they did it before turning 22....

    March 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Tests of a living faith

    We recently started a study on Wednesday nights of the letter James wrote to the church. This Bible book is a practical guide to Christian living, but more than that, it really forces one to think honestly about their faith. Is your faith ...

    July 24, 2014

  • Which Bible bit is most misinterpreted?

    The Rev. Scott Gordon, Claycomo Baptist Church: Many passages vie for consideration, but the first “bit” that came to mind we find in Matthew 7:1-6 and Romans 2:1-5....

    July 24, 2014

  • CAIR-OK plans day of service

    The Oklahoma chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-OK) will join Mercy Youth Club and IST Youth at the fourth annual Ramadan Day of Service Saturday....

    July 18, 2014

  • Guest preacher and author to speak

    The Reverend Dr. James White will preach, as well as discuss, his new book, “Brief Christian Histories: Getting a Sense of Our Long Story,” this Sunday at First Christian Church, 220 S. Webster. White will preach at both 8:40 and 10:45 ...

    July 18, 2014

  • Life on earth is a vapor

    The last of the baby boomers turn 50 this year. This generation of Americans, born from 1946-1964, is named after the post-World War II “baby boom.” I am a baby boomer and as one of the “late boomers,” one of the last to turn 50 — ...

    July 17, 2014

  • What does a bird ‘alone on a housetop’ mean

    Reassurance of God’s mercy The Rev. Betty Hanna-Witherspoon, Ebenezer A.M.E. Church: This verse, Psalm 102:7, has a notation in the New Living Translation, “A prayer of one overwhelmed with trouble, pouring out problems before the ...

    July 17, 2014

  • Hillsboro resident’s first CD will benefit Haiti missions

    When Angie Sawyer's son passed away at age 5 she tried several ways to deal with her grief. But none of them worked, she said, until she turned to God. So to tell her story, she recently recorded her first CD, “On The Right Track.” All ...

    July 10, 2014

  • Anti-bias order creates rift

    In the intensifying debate over religious liberty, President Barack Obama faces pressure from opposite flanks as he prepares to issue an executive order barring federal contractors from discriminating against gay and transgender people in ...

    July 10, 2014

  • Is anything really free?

    We have just celebrated the nation’s 238th birthday. We are extremely proud of and attached to freedom. The Founding Fathers wrote into the founding documents practical truths that make those freedoms attainable. I love the fact that they ...

    July 10, 2014