Saturday, November 03, 2007

The Plot Thickens

So, probably not more than two days after the Throwaway Theological Allusion, I was hanging out at Not My Starbucks with the Item. (Incidentally, you may have noticed the Item doesn't blog anymore. But I guess I can still link there if I want.)

We were talking, oddly enough, about predestination and other stuff. Some of the other stuff was writing, and the Item was telling me how he has taken to praying before he writes. He can correct me if I remember this wrong, but I think basically he prays that God will help him write something true, and something that He wants.

Earlier that day I had been reading a book by Walter Wangerin, in which he called us "sub-creators" with God. I like this, because I think it kind of gets at the fact that we are designed to create, being made in God's image--but that we aren't on the same level as He is. He is The Creator--we're simply creative creatures. We're designed to work with Him, but we're not in charge.

It felt like previously unrelated thoughts were starting to converge. I thought about the Item, who is a writer, asking The Author for guidance to write the book. I thought, the Item has to do the writing, and he might have an idea the direction he wants a story to go in, but he doesn't know for certain what will happen between the beginning and the end. His characters might surprise him. But God--well, God isn't the same kind of writer that we are. He is (as Christianne said in her comment on the last post) outside of time. He's outside of all of our limitations. We "write" the story with God--but He's the Author of the whole thing, knowing all the details, and we figure it out as we go along.

Parables never really do work point by point anyway. Neither do metaphors. The Bible often calls God "Father," for example. There are enough similarities to make the comparison meaningful. But there are plenty of fathers around who just make God look bad, and even the ones who don't, are too limited by their not-God-ness to show us exactly what He's like.

So, you know, the open theism thing makes sense. I can see why someone might come up with that idea, and why people would believe it. But it seems to me to leave out the possibility that, you know, God might be kind of different from us, even after our being made in His image and everything. It leaves out the possibility, too, that as His image-bearing creatures, we may have some fairly awesome capabilities, but we just might not ever truly get a handle on what happens outside the box. There are some things we may never be able to figure out--like how God chooses us so that we have a choice.


Annelise said...

Really good post--and I thought Christianne's earlier comment was excellent as well. I guess that's what I think about openness theology--nice idea, but I don't want a God who isn't a whole lot different from me! Anyway, you said it well.

Christianne said...


You just plain, hands down, rock.

Rebecca said...


Upon Christianne's suggestion a few weeks ago, I subscribed to your blog. I have really enjoyed your posts.

This post made me think of a book Christianne and I read several times (and talked about a lot!) during our college days: Mind of the Maker by Dorothy Sayers. She discusses this exact topic in a most interesting and profound way. If you haven't already read this book, you may enjoy getting a copy.

Jenn said...


Christianne--It's kind of hard to rock with hands down. But I'll try. ;)

Rebecca--welcome! Thanks for visiting and saying hi. I can tell I'm going to enjoy reading your blog, too. Thanks for the book suggestion. I love Dorothy Sayers' writing--but I haven't read that one yet. I must check it out . . .