In our time, two movements are sweeping simultaneously across the globe, one is a glowing agnosticism and her twin sister atheism and the other is scrupulosity and its attendant religious indocility. Both extremes are dangerous, but we will be taking up religious gullibility today.
Scrupulosity is a form of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) involving religious or moral obsessions. Scrupulous individuals are overly concerned that something they thought or did might be a sin or other violation of religious or moral doctrine. Scrupulosity has socio-economic dimensions when this religiosity breeds gullible and lazy individuals who virtually depend on God for all things they can provide for themselves.
In biblical theology, the Lord-shall-provide is often a lazy man’s philosophy as Paul rightly warned that Thessalonians who refused to work should not expect food (2 Thess. 3:10). The Pauline food is literally understood as things God has given us power to do in order to provide for our basic needs.
Without undermining God’s providence, but also not conceding every duty to God, it bears repeating that God is not in the habit of doing for men what he has given them power to do through a right deployment of resources and reason. For instance, poverty does not die by a Holy Ghost fire but through an entrepreneurial spirit and a good economic planning. If poverty is a trademark in a family, the option is to borrow economic ideas from those who know better, and where there is nobody in a family who is capable of innovating business ideas, the family can marry from an enterprising family and change their narrative. You cannot cure poverty curse in a family by cutting down economic trees. The root is not in the ground, but in the brain.
In marriage, God gave man something more than procreation. Marriage serves as a system of crossbreeding towards more productive, progressive and beautiful humanity. If ugliness is running in your family, marry a beautiful outsider and the disrupt the ugly gene. If you desire light skin in your family, do not wait until God changes your skin colour, marry someone who is has a gene of your dreamed complexion.
If your family is too dull in learning, do not write and burn petitions before the Blessed Sacrament for God to turn nothing into something. Discover what your children are good in doing and put them through that. If the dullness is biological, marry from or to a smart family, change the password and shut out dullness. You will be doing the best investment for your children and humanity, otherwise you will keep reticulating dullness. If you are short and you do not seem to utilise your house hanging walls, marry a tall partner, bear average or tall kids and stop blaming your neighbour for a catarrh you got from dusty ceiling fans.
If you see someone you would love to have as a life partner, approach the person and have a talk with him or her. Stop taking people’s pictures to church or shrines. Why disturbing God whom you do not see to convince a person whom you meet on the street? You will still be there and another person will grab him or her.
Do we need prayers at all? Yes, we need prayers to accept things we cannot change. We need prayers for wisdom to know when or when not run to God. We need God for serenity of mind amid taunting tasks. But when herdsmen are knocking at our doors with machetes, we need guns more than Gods.
Sometimes, we need to give God space to breathe. Making God look like he is responsible for all our failures is unchristian. God is not our mate.
©Felix Uche Akam: The Dragnet 06.03.2022.