Did We Just Replace Belief in God With Belief in the Universe?
I never thought there would come a day when I’d hear these phrases so often:
“Let’s claim it from the universe.” “The universe will soon give you what you deserve.” “The universe is listening.”
Even movies and television shows reflect this kind of belief. Famous celebrities speak about it in such a normal and casual way that there can be no doubt this thing has entered into the very culture of the world we’re living in.
What is this universe being referred to? Is it the scientific kind of universe that makes up the material things we know? Is it some kind of power that works for those who have faith in it? Considering the way such phrases are often used these days, it cannot refer to the purely materialistic universe we study through science.
Somehow, I think this has some connection with certain New Age spiritual beliefs. This includes the Law of Attraction, a concept that has also successfully entered our modern world. Such a belief system seems to say that we receive those things we attract based on our predominant thoughts.
This “universe” then seems to be an “impersonal force” that can act according to our behavior. It has certain laws that if followed, could result in granting a person’s desires. While some people may equate this with prayer, I would like to clarify the difference between the two. With the Christian faith, prayer is a two-way communication between a Personal God and a human being. God is not an impersonal force, but Someone we can have a relationship with.
Before all of these ever happened and reached mass media, I read a quote from one of Paulo Coelho’s books (The Alchemist) to the same effect: “When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.”
During that time, however, I understood the said quote differently. I understood it to mean that if ever all things in the universe help someone achieve a certain good, it would only be through the power of God.
In our culture today, belief in God has been separated (if not altogether forgotten), from belief in such providence made evident through our visible universe. It’s as though the universe can act by itself without God being the One behind every good.
Perhaps people have been too adjusted in trying to be politically correct. Or maybe faith in religion has been seen too offensive to mentioned in mass media.
But I hope that those who still believe in the Christian God continue to do so and not be ashamed of their faith. It’s so easy to catch this phrase about the universe. Please be aware that other people are listening to what you’re saying.
If you still believe in God, I hope you can boldly say that “you pray” for this or that to happen instead of saying “let’s claim it from the universe.”
God has made the universe and everything that is in it. He loves you and cares for you even before you were even born. The universe can never do that.
“God is an ocean, a fire, a living fountain…That is the essence of prayer: this contact with a living God, a God who reacts not like a simple inanimate being but like a living person, with a thrill of joy, with the gift of Himself.” — Marie-Eugene of the Child Jesus, OCD
“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” — Romans 8:28, NASB
Jocelyn Soriano is the author of the book “To Love an Invisible God”.
Is it really possible to love a God we cannot even see? Can we really love Him as we love another Person? A Person who can listen to us and respond to us? A Person who can know us far more intimately than any human being ever can. Read more about “To Love an Invisible God — click here.