On God

Dear Terrence,

Do you ever give any thought to the possibility that God, quite frankly, is tired of you putting things on him? I hear you say that almost countless times throughout the day: whenever you want to convince someone that you’re speaking in earnest, that you’re not joking (or “playing” as you call it), you put it “on God.” For some time, I heard people putting things on people’s graves: “I put that on my grandma’s grave!” These days, though, I only hear you putting stuff “on God.”

“No, for real! I put that on God!” you say when someone thinks you’re exaggerating.

“On God! On God!” you say whenever someone thinks you’re lying.

The most obvious concern someone might have with that is the emptiness it implies. (And if you’re religious, it’s on the cusp of blasphemy.) If you’re willing to put almost everything “on God,” then you don’t really consider putting things “on God” of much value. What we value, we use sparingly; this, you use in great abundance. It’s the same principle as the boy who cried wolf: say it enough, and it becomes meaningless.

What’s just as concerning but not as obvious is the fact that you must joke so much that you must convince people when you’re serious. People’s automatic assumption with you is to doubt it, to think you’re being facetious. In other words, you open your mouth to speak and people automatically disbelieve you. And so when you want to make sure people know that you’re not joking, you proclaim that whatever assertion you’ve just made, you’ve made it “on God.”

Maybe you should start relying on your own reputation for telling the truth than putting everything on God. The boy who cried wolf and everything…

Truthfully,
Your Teacher

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6 thoughts on “On God

  1. “What we value, we use sparingly; this, you use in great abundance. It’s the same principle as the boy who cried wolf: say it enough, and it becomes meaningless.” — Wise words! I couldn’t agree with you more! Lovely letter.

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