I had been dirt biking all day long in the canyon. Covering a couple square miles of terrain. My friends and I had just gotten done and after shooting the breeze for a while they had loaded up their bikes and headed home. As they drove off I reached in my pocket looking for the keys to unlock my truck. They weren’t there. Now to set the stage a little, this was waaaaaayyyy back in the day before cellphones so there was no one to call for help. I was stuck. I’d been in this situation before though, with something lost and no one to help me find it. From that day as a young child when I had prayed to heavenly father to help me find dad’s new hammer I’d lost I had repeated this miracle several times. So here I was, a poor college student stuck in the mountains missing the keys to my truck. I had already searched around the vehicle and was convinced they were lost on the hills somewhere where I had been riding.
Confident that I would be answered due to past experience I prayed to find my keys. After the prayer I calmed my mind as I had learned to do since that first time and waited for the impressions to come. I allowed my thoughts to drift over where I had been and where I had gone during the day. I began to wander up into the hills as these thoughts tumbled around in my head and I thought for a moment I saw a glint in my minds eye, near a rock on a steep incline where I had stopped for a break. I went to the place in my memory and right there in the sage brush I found the keys to my truck.
At the time this was yet another confirmation that the guy upstairs was looking out for me. This was one of the spiritual talents that I seemed to posses, the ability to find lost things with a little help from above. It happened many times and repeatedly, the formula was the same. Pray, ponder, clear your mind, then follow the impressions that came. It was in fact such a big deal that when my shelf collapsed I honestly wondered if there was no divine being then I must have been fooling myself all along with this result. I figured I would lose the ability as it was probably part of my imagination.
Then one day my wife had lost her wallet. I was pretty much atheist by this point (so long as you don’t count the Fridge) so I really didn’t think there was anyone to help answer this need. But for a moment I reasoned, maybe I can still do this! So I thought clearly about the goal of finding the wallet, asked wife a few questions about where she had been. Then did what still came natural, I cleared my mind and waited for the impressions to come. The impressions led me outside to where her car was parked and fresh snow had fallen, I remember clearly thinking, maybe she just dropped it inadvertently in the snow bank when she got out of the car. I walked over there and after a second or so of rooting around in the snow came up with her lost wallet.
I was kind of surprised. I certainly didn’t believe in any deity, and yet I had not only found something I had lost, I’d found something someone else had lost. Either the Fridge really was watching out for me, or something else was afoot. Sometime later in my studies of human psychology I found out that the prefrontal cortex of our noodle is a pretty cool device, it lets you simulate what other people are thinking. This is because we have things called mirror neurons among other structures that facilitate this ability. We are actually pretty damn good at it. We call it putting ourself in another persons shoes. It is a form of monkey see, monkey do and the foundation of the ability for babes to imitate what they see an adult do.
I ultimately concluded that my thinking process created this miracle of finding things. When I would consciously try to quiet my mind I was in effect listening to the parts of my subconscious that would replay memories, or simulate the path my wife may have took and look for clues to where the missing object might be. I was actively using my prefrontal cortex in a semi-subconcious sorta way. It is the same way you can drive a car from one place to another thinking about some important meeting and not remember the trip hardly at all. Our brain can think and do stuff without us being consciously aware of it. In Iron Man terms, we have a built in Jarvis, we can give our subconscious tasks to work on, things to figure out and when it does, it lets us know with quiet impressions, or gut feelings the results of its calculation. It is how we gain intuitive insight into things. It isn’t a perfect computer though, like any computer feed it garbage and it will spit garbage back. To me this is where reason came in.
You see on my journey out of blind faith and into reason and logic I realized something very profound about those lost keys. In the big picture of things my little prayer to find them is really pretty meaningless. Sure if I thought God was looking out for me and my stupid mistakes it made me feel pretty special that he’d help me find my lost keys. But was my prayer somehow less faithful than the mother with a starving child? Was my need greater? I knew my faith wasn’t any stronger I had first hand worked with families that didn’t know where their next meal would come from they had tremendous faith and yet food would not be on the table the next morning.
You see I knew for a fact prayers to help starving children went unanswered and yet little old me got the miracle of lost keys pretty much every time I needed it. What kind of all powerful being would lead me to the place I would find a way to get to McDonalds for my next meal and at the same time not bother to lead a starving waif in Africa to a bowl of rice? Maybe I am a flawed person, but if that is the order of priorities of a deity, all loving certainly doesn’t make sense as a descriptor. If however the divine is really just a reflection of our inner selves it makes perfect sense that my keys could be found when I needed it. I also realized that those starving children aren’t getting any help unless it is coming from people like me and you. I had been feeding my subconscious this illogical idea that God watched out for me as an individual while ignoring other far more important prayers so if anything good happened to me I automatically attributed it to him. Like I said garbage in garbage out. If you try to justify the idea that an all knowing all loving heavenly father is totally ready to find keys at a whim while children go for days without food. It makes no sense at all. The only reason your internal Jarvis spits back anything to justify it at all is because you repeatedly trained it to do so, same way you trained it to drive you to work while your thoughts were elsewhere.
Ultimately I realized that by touting my testimony of finding lost keys I was supremely selfish if I truly believed God had my back while any child in the world went without a meal. Maybe that helps you realize why I ended up believing the Fridge is as powerful a God as any out there.
Now putting on the profetic mantle for a bit, the Fridge wants you to know this: If you need a deity to feel special or find keys or maybe chill your beverage, it’s there for you. But starving kids in Africa… that’s on us, it’s simply not that powerful of a deity.
Yes for the key in life to open the sinners inner life to take in Christ by the word of God in helping of the HOl Sprit with us at give authory and wisdom to handle right our neighbors in hungry after God to be save from the fire of hell and we will help and take care of them in Jesus name ,thanks and bless,keijo sweden
[…] some fun insights posted this week: You can perform your own key-finding miracle — no God required! Kind of like modern medicine. Then there was an analysis of […]
Thank You so very much for your thought-provoking article. I really do appreciate your words.
The power is within us, this is the lesson. We don’t need the god of lost keys to find our keys any more than we need a god to solve the problem of starvation in the world. We are and answer and the problem to both.
Just like we can quiet the mind and find our own keys, we can solve world hunger, if we we only apply the same lesson; make it a priority, quiet the mind, put effort into it and stop wasting energy on things that don’t matter.
Myth once revealed has merit. Santa Claus might be mythological, but the lesson is real, giving and caring for others is a good thing. It is in that way Santa is real, we make him real. By revealing this truth to your kids that have experienced the receiving side of giving, they understand that that good only comes from sacrifice, they realize the good by playing the role. Maybe humanity is on the cusp of this same discovery in terms of God, theology and heaven. What a wonderful place the world would be if we all realized it was up to us to make heaven on earth.
That is one of the biggest reasons that led me to atheism after leaving the church as well. And now when I hear others talk about their prayers being answered in this way, it makes me sad that they dont give themselves more credit or others more credit when it was them who did it.