Emily on God

I am reading Emily Climbs, book two in the series about Emily by L.M. Montgomery. I read Emily of New Moon last January as part of the Old Books project, but then neglected the rest of the series. I’ve returned to Emily to start off the 2014 Old Books Challenge. This morning on the bus I had to read these paragraphs a few times as I rather enjoyed them. Here are some of Emily’s thoughts on God as extracted from her Jimmy-Book.

“Well, God’s ways are very mysterious.” [Aunt Elizabeth said this]

“That is why they are interesting,” I [Emily] said.

But Aunt Elizabeth frowned and told me not to be irreverent, as she always does when I say anything abut God. I wonder why. She won’t let Perry and me talk about Him, either, though Perry is really very much interested in Him and wants to find out all about Him. Aunt Elizabeth overheard me telling Perry one Sunday afternoon what I thought God was like, and she said it was scandalous.

It wasn’t! The trouble is, Aunt Elizabeth and I have different Gods, that is all. Everybody has a different God, I think. Aunt Ruth’s, for instance, is one that punishes her enemies–sends ‘judgements’ on them. That seems to me to be about all the use He really is to her. Jim Cosgrain uses his to swear by. But Aunt Janey Milburn walks in the light of her God’s countenance, every day, and shines with it.

Theology out of the mouths of babes? Well, put into the mouths of teens anyway. This is an interesting and astute observation about the uses people make of God. Thoughts? Feelings?


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