I Don’t Think About God — CJ Quartlbaum
A few weeks ago I watched this by Youtubers Aba and Preach about the existence of God. In this video, Aba says that when the topic of religion comes up, he has no opinion because he doesn’t think about God.
His reasoning was simple: “I don’t know, I have no way of confirming, and it doesn’t matter. Ima be out here and try to do right by the people around me and if God does exist then hopefully he’ll accept me and what I’ve done.” He goes on to say that a lot of religious people don’t think about God because they just accept him and the reason is that they’re afraid of the unknown so they just accept that reality because it’s comforting. Lastly, he said that in his experience with the hyper-religious, “They don’t think about God and his existence, they just accept it as an undisputable fact and move on.”
Now there’s a lot to unpack there and a lot more to unpack with Preach’s follow-up comments but maybe another day. The question I do want to tackle is, how right are Aba’s words? Are Christians thinking about God?
Jesus that out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. Whatever is going on in our heads and hearts is going to be what we speak about most.
Where do our minds go when idle? For me, He doesn’t occupy nearly the amount of my thoughts that he deserves. My mind too often wanders to fitness, money, and food. Not bad things but definitely not God-tier things. And certainly nothing worth obsessing over and spending most of my mental energy on.
On some level, it could be that I’m so comfortable with the idea of God that I don’t feel the need to debate his existence in my head constantly. But I should be thinking about what He calls me to do and be. I should be thinking about how I can be a better husband, father, brother, son, friend, and citizen in this world. For His glory and the good of others. Instead, I’m thinking about what it takes to be able to dunk at 35. Trivial at best, shameful at worst.
This is why scripture is constantly pressing us to point our hearts and minds toward God. how many opportunities for ministry have we missed because our minds were elsewhere?
I do think Aba hit on something interesting. He said most religious people don’t think about God because they’re afraid of the future and find the idea of him to be comforting. For many Christians, God is a simple balm for the weary soul. When things go bad, we say our trust is in Him to make things better, even if our subsequent actions don’t line up with that thought pattern. And when things are good, we give the obligatory thank you to God (think artists thanking God for their Grammy). In some ways, we’ve made God into Linus’ blanket.
We don’t think about the blanket but we clutch it for dear life. The blanket is ever-present but more of an accessory than anything else. We don’t think about it too much and it certainly doesn’t dictate our lives.
Aba asserts that a lot of religious people just accept God because they’re afraid of the unknown. While I think it’s a massive problem that a lot of us are not thinking about God with more regularity, I do think he is wrong on this point.
Those of us who follow Jesus do so precisely because we know. We know what it means to be in need of a savior. We know that God exists and the universe isn’t some happy accident. Just look at the picture of distant galaxies taken by the James Webb telescope. Does that not point to a divine creator? Or the fact that one degree, either way, makes the Earth uninhabitable, or the mystery of life formed in the womb, or the harmony of nature (even mosquitos have a purpose), it can’t all be an accident.
We also know there is empirical evidence that Jesus at the very least lived and died. Our entire faith hinges on the resurrection and the testimony of those who witnessed it being true. It wasn’t some mass delusion or psychosis. If this is wrong, then like , we’ve wasted our lives. We bank everything on the fact that He is risen.
As Christians, there is one more thing we know, how the story ends. With every knee bowing and tongue confessing that He is . We either bend the knee or our knees get bent.
There is a lot that we don’t know but this we do know: that we have been buried with him, resurrected with him, and made . That truth should impact what we think about most. It should orient our hearts toward gratitude and encourage us to live in a way that brings him glory.
Like I said a few weeks ago, there are many things at war for our minds but we need to be mindful of what and whom we allow to win.
Originally published at https://www.cjquartlbaum.com on July 23, 2022.