A song by Shelby Earl,
a tattoo by Kyler Martz
When confronted with an undertow -- a disappointing election, a personal failure, a loss in love, a death -- buckle under for a while, but then become, as best you can, a strong swimmer. God does not
cause the undertow and cannot prevent it. God gives the strength to swim.
-- Open and Relational (Process) Theology
I asked a friend what she hopes to become after a great disappointment. Her answer was: a strong swimmer. A strong swimmer has powerful arms and knows how to kick. When the tears weigh her down, she sheds them and starts swimming. Process Theology puts it this way: the spirit of creative transformation at work in the world -- God's Breathing -- does not cause the disappointment. God helps you kick. I think of my mother, Virginia McDaniel, now age 99, who thinks of God power as invitation to pump your legs in order to swing on a swingset; and who uses the metaphor of pumping to illustrate how she has reinvented herself again and again for many years. Kicking while swimming, pumping while swinging - that's where God is. God Almighty? No Way, says Rabbi Artson. God who helps us make a way out of no way? Yes, Indeed, says Monica A. Coleman. The Octopus Lady understands.
-- Jay McDaniel