Archive for February 1st, 2007

Not a tame lion

I’ve been here a while now. 5 months or something like that. But who’d counting? Apart from the immigration department…

And so I’ve become a bit of a fixture in the hospital. People say hello to me in the corridor, the nurses all know I go through a cream bun a day at lunch time. I have a reputation as providing a needle service for most of the hospital. Venous access, central lines, chest drains, lumbar punctures – I’m your man.

So it’s easy to sit down, relax and put down roots so to speak. Though that mostly involves sitting on my bum at the computer at the nurses station, lord of all I survey in the ICU. And all the staff have got used to me there and I spend lots of time just chatting and finding out people’s stories. Probably half the staff are non Kiwis, from Africans to Brits to Yanks. Makes for an interesting environment.

I’ve got into quite a few chats about belief and Christianity, mostly through talking about work in Africa. Quickly you end up talking about things like evolution (no one is yet to explain to me that every observed mutation in humans is invariably negative and in a scheme of natural selection how does negative mutation produce advancement. I’m certainly not a creationist fundamentalist in any way but people just don’t think!), and then apologise for the hypocrisies of religiosity and al the badge carrying idiots of the world. And then we talk about GOD himself and that’s where it gets interesting.

People invent the god they want to have. A character akin to something between Santa Claus and old father time. JESUS as the kind and wise teacher, drastically misunderstood by his followers (CS Lewis Says that CHRIST leaves you three options, a liar, a lunatic on a par with a man who says he is a poached egg, or what he says he is – Lord of the universe). A man who says ‘I am the way the truth and the life’ is not in the business of being misunderstood.

And after these conversations I realise that I don’t believe in the god that they don’t believe in either. If that makes sense. They’re busy not believing in a pigmy god, a shadow of a caricature of GOD. I realise that I’m with them, I don’t believe in that god either. These people have no idea what it is that they’re not believing in.

And that’s mostly our fault. The candy floss, sugar coated Christianity that we present is lame and feeble. ‘He’s not a tame lion you know?’


February 2007