Desiderata by Max Ehrmann is a 1927 prose poem. "Desiderata" (Latin: "desired things")
19. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be.
This instruction tells us to believe in a power greater than ourselves – a higher being. To believe in the creator of the universe. To believe there is a creator of the universe. How we choose to define this belief and define this power is up to us. This power that is greater than ourselves benefits us if it has attributes that empower us in positive ways. A power we can call on. A power in which we have not only belief, but in which we have faith and trust. It's personal. It's real. A power that has our back.
This instruction also tells us that our journey is to learn to be at peace with our conception of our personal God. We might address our personal God as Father; as Mother; as Father/Mother; as the Almighty; as the Creator. To be at peace with God means to come to terms with our personal relationship with him/her - to come to terms with our personal conception of whatever we conceive God to be.
Is our God male or female or both? Is our God living or non-living? Do we possess or reflect the character attributes of our God? Do we see these attributes as positive and empowering? Is our God a perfect God that complements the attributes we don't have? Do we allow our God to lead us or are do we try to lead our God? Do we respect and honor our God? Do we find ourselves humbly disagreeing with our God? How do we resolve conflicts to maintain peace with our God? Is our God loving and forgiving? Is our God merciful and gracious?
In spite of the myriad religions from which we can choose, there are people who don't believe there's a God. It may feel easier for them to not believe in God rather than try to come to terms with understanding their conception of what God is.
I see this instruction as giving us the permission and freedom to determine our conception of God. My personal God is the universal God; and the universal God is my personal God. Having a personal God indicates intimacy - inseparable proximity. A haven for protection, healing and answers. Having a universal God is my interconnection with humanity and infinity.
The universe is unfolding as it should; therefore, let us be at peace with God whatever we conceive him to be.
Thank you for reading. What are your thoughts?
Dedicated to my sons Jibri and Chris, my privilege and blessing. EcwmB