In chapter eight of the children’s classic, Winnie the Pooh, Christopher Robin assembles the childlike animals for an adventure. He announces that they are off to discover the North Pole. They set out in all seriousness with each character contributing something essential to the quest. Christopher Robin has heard about the North Pole but he has no idea what or where the North Pole is. Along the way little Roo falls into a stream and needs rescuing. Everyone pitches in to rescue him. Pooh picks up a pole and fishes him out.

The emergency over, the animals talk it over while Pooh stands there with the pole in his hands. Christopher Robin then says,

“Pooh…where did you find that pole?”

Pooh looked at the pole in his hands.

“I just found it,” he said, “I thought it ought to be useful. I just picked it up.”

“Pooh,” said Christopher Robin solemnly, “the Expedition is over. You have found the North Pole!”

“Oh!” said Pooh.

They stuck the pole in the ground, and Christopher Robin tied a message on to it,

North Pole

Discovered by Pooh

Pooh Found It.

Then they all went home again…

Eugene Peterson uses this little tale to illustrate how many people approach spirituality. They are out searching for a vaguely defined spirituality (the “North Pole”). “Every once in a while one of them picks up something and someone says, `That’s it!’ Sure enough, it does look like “it.” And someone, usually a “spiritual authority” (Christopher Robin), hangs a sign on it: “Spirituality.” And then everyone goes home again, until the next expedition is proposed.” (Peterson, CT, 7/13/98, p.51).

Spirituality based on personal feelings is not Christian spirituality anymore than Pooh bear’s pole was the North Pole. The human spirit may produce a feeling of spirituality, but true spirituality is centered in Jesus, his life, death and resurrection. The old hymn goes:

I love to tell the story / Of unseen things above,
Of Jesus and His glory, Of Jesus and His love;
I love to tell the story / Because I know ‘tis true,
It satisfies my longings / As nothing else can do.
I love to tell the story! ‘Twill be my theme in glory–
To tell the old, old story / Of Jesus and His love.
“I love to tell the story / Because I know ‘tis true,
It satisfies my longings / As nothing else can do.

It is the truth that satisfies my longings, not my longings that I mistake as truth.

2 thoughts on “TRUTH”

  1. In this age of relativism, when your truth may not be my truth, it is little wonder that people hop from church to church. Sorry, but people who go from church to church will never find a church that gives them the “best bang for the buck”. Only when people begin searching with their hearts for truth, will they find the old truths of that old hymn is the only truth that satisfies.

  2. The part ofthe Pooh story that strikes me is the fact that they just assumed the pole that was found was the one they were looking for. That is like so many people to come to conclusions without any facts/truth. This is even scarier when people use this methodology when coming to conclusions about God.

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