Focal Point (for publishing-16/11/04)
Oh My God - Oh My God
Our Australia vocabulary is an ever-changing thing as is our culture, our dress, our fads and our eating habits. We know where baseball caps worn back to front come from. We know where the cappuccino and latte trend has come from and we know that some of our worst eating habits imported from overseas are leaving us with an 'enormous' obesity problem. But where oh where has 'Oh my God'!!! come from. Call me cynical, but I don't think it is from a deep-seated desire to speak to the Almighty, or from a desperate need to be rescued from our situation by a greater power. Australian Idol stars, Backyard Blitz recipients and the Footy Show's Street Talk interviewees are the worst, or best at it. Why are so many people crying out Oh my God, Oh my God, when they get a fright, win a prize, make a mistake or get caught out. The fact that this phrase has become so popular, could suggest that many people are unconsciously voicing a deep need for a search for spiritual reality. Each day I'am encountering more people than ever interested in the exploration of spiritual things. Some are depicting their spiritual understanding or journey in the art form of painting. Some are expressing it in dance or mime. Many are reading widely and millions, yes I'll stay with millions are looking for divine guidance on matters ranging from their future, baby naming, weather forecasting, picking race horse winners, selecting partners and so on. It is not so hard these days in what can be termed a Post Christian era, to engage people in a spiritual conversation. Of course they're not talking about the church, unless they are bagging it, but they are trying to make sense of their life and existence. I sat with a guy the other day and tried to help him make sense of the mess his life had become and he said that maybe it's about time I let go and let God have a go. Years ago I heard a beautiful illustration of this situation. A young boy was driving in a horse drawn jinker with his dad. The dad gave him the reins and let him drive until he could no longer control the horse. It was at this point that the dad, rather than taking over, put his arms around the boy with his big hands over the boy's hands and together they pulled the horse up. I believe that if we are serious in our 'Oh my God' cry, and we are trying to get life under control like the boy, then the God I know and believe in will put his arms around us and together we will succeed.
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Co-ordinator Focal Point