Lately, it feels like controversy is constantly all up in my face. So. much. input. Social media, blogs, articles, posts, comments. Everyone has an opinion. I end up feeling like I ought to have a “stance” on everything. And, if I’m honest, as a Christian it feels even MORE like I should have this stuff figured out. (Whatever “this stuff” means this week.)
“Where do YOU stand on this issue?”
Ummm? Honestly, I can’t even explain the dinosaurs. Can someone help a sister out? Because whether it’s dinosaurs or bathroom policies, there must be an actual “right” answer! Right?
But how can so many people have so many different right answers?
And on top of THAT, how can two people who both love God, walk with Jesus, and even study His Word – end up on different sides of the same issue?
My brain needs a break. My answer-finder, stance-determiner, stand-maker needs a rest. Because even if I think I understand what’s “right” or “wrong,” somehow I can still do what is right in the wrong way.
So, I’m calling a timeout.
Have we considered – or maybe we’ve just forgotten – that we aren’t supposed to have it all figured out?
Psalm 131 says, “My heart is not proud, Lord, my eyes are not haughty; I do not concern myself with great matters or things too wonderful to me. [“BUT WHAT ABOUT THE DINOSAURS!?!”] But I have calmed and quieted myself. I am like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child I am content. Israel, put your hope in the Lord both now and forevermore.”
Okay, not to nitpick, but, why a weaned child? Why not just any child? Don’t you imagine any child in its mother’s arms as sweet and and at rest?
Well, if you ask a nursing mother, the answer is NOPE.
Just yesterday, I watched my friend Amy hand over her almost-3-month-old son to her husband at bedtime. “Please, you take him. He settles down better with you. He just thinks of me as the food source.”
And it’s true, right? A nursing child, when cradled near his mother’s breast, is constantly looking for an answer to his hunger. It’s difficult for him to truly rest in her arms. My own children would never rest when I cradled them near my chest because they would instantly – whether instinctively or habitually – begin rooting for milk, restlessly looking for something from me.
Is that how I spend my time with God? Constantly seeking answers, understanding, or revelation? More, more, more?
Or can I simply rest in His presence? Can I stop this perpetual rooting for answers or whatever, and be content to be held?
Can I trust He knows what I need, and will provide it at the right time?
There is so much – some old (AGAIN, DINOSAURS.), some new (BAAAAATHROOOOOOMS) – just so much I just DON’T KNOW. Yes, I’m a Christian. And no, I don’t know the answer. I don’t know what’s best. I don’t know I don’t know I don’t know.
But here’s what I DO know.
God is good.
God loves us. (All of us.)
We’re not perfect. (None of us.)
This separates us from God. (All of us.)
But, God doesn’t want even one of us to remain separated from Him. (None of us!)
So, Jesus died to pay the penalty for our sin and give us access to God. (All of us!)
But, God will not force anyone to love Him. (None. None of us.)
So, we each have the opportunity to accept and receive this gift of salvation through Jesus. We have a choice. (All. of. us.)
For me, I have chosen to accept this gift from Jesus – the gift of Jesus. I’m different because of Him. In every way that is good, I am different because of His presence in my life. And I could spend the rest of my life trying to put into words who He is and all He’s done. I probably will, actually.
And in the meantime, I’m sure I will keep asking for wisdom and clarity and understanding. That is not all bad. There will be answers to find and stances to take and stands to make.
But when I don’t understand, when I don’t know the answers, may I release the quest to know more, and rest in the invitation to know Him. And by knowing Him, I believe even the way I walk through my “not knowing” will be better, truer, holier, and more loving – more like Him.