Friday, April 11, 2008

Does God Tolerate Us?


Main Entry: tol·er·ate
Pronunciation: \ˈtä-lə-ˌrāt\
Function: transitive verb
Inflected Form(s): tol·er·at·ed; tol·er·at·ing
Etymology: Latin toleratus, past participle of tolerare to endure, put up with; akin to Old English tholian to bear, Latin tollere to lift up, latus carried (suppletive past participle of ferre), Greek tlēnai to bear
Date: 1524
1: to endure or resist the action of (as a drug or food) without serious side effects or discomfort : exhibit physiological tolerance for
2 a: to allow to be or to be done without prohibition, hindrance, or contradiction b: to put up with

I'm wrestling with the idea that God tolerates us. Tolerance is such a politically charged word. There is a call for the tolerance of all people, life styles, and expressions of self, yet I don't see tolerance as defined by Webster a part of God's character. I don't see God "putting up with" us. I do see God loving us in ways that demonstrates patience and forbearance.

Tolerance in my mind is putting up with someone with no hope that person is going to change, hopeless resignation if you will. Love seems to expect all things, and hopes for all things; transformation. Isn't this what God hopes for us? Who wants to be tolerated? I don't.

What are your thoughts?