When was the last time you were satisfied with something being unknown in your life?
Personally, I am not always great at dwelling in the mystery of things (even as someone who studied theology i.e., faith seeking understanding). When I am confused about something that I’m going through in life, it’s more of a “What the heck is going on? Where is God in all of this?, and When will it end so that I can get on to a more fulfilling version of life?”
Maybe it’s a human thing to not like uncertainty. But, I think it’s harder for us at this point in history. With some device never too far away, we have access to information whenever we want it. It’s not always reliable information, but it’s there, and it gives us a sense of control.
This challenges living a life of faith. Not because God is not reliable. God is more reliable than whatever is on our smartphones. But because God is not as easy as picking up a phone and searching for something on Google. We have questions for God, but our information-on-demand style isn’t quite how God works. And, honestly, that isn’t how life works.
How many times in life have you been unsure about what is happening, facing something that no article or social media post will fix? It’s part of the rhythm and story of life- unemployment, injury, illness, death, becoming a parent, breaking up, periods of transition.
While we want to validate God’s usefulness based on quantifiable evidence or immediate results, God isn’t a click-and-deliver kind of deal (at least not most of the time).
I was praying with a devotional earlier this week, and this was part of the morning prayer, “Lift up your voices to glorify the LORD/ as much as you can, for there is still more./ Extol him with renewed strength,/ do not grow weary, for you cannot fathom him” (Sirach 43: 28-30).
And I remembered something that I love and often forget about God. God is so much greater than I am. God is mystery, but that mystery is not bad and does not disqualify God. That mystery is worthy of awe and praise. In God’s mystery, a child is being knit together in my womb right now. In God’s mystery, I was formed in my mother’s womb. In God’s loving mystery, I met my spouse at an awkward freshman orientation dance when he was a college senior and I a college junior. In God’s mystery, we go through trials, but are given compassionate people who revive in us hope and strength. In God’s creative mystery, the sun rises every morning and sets every night.
If I’m being honest, the parts of my life that have at one point been mystery to me or that came to me without my doing are the most beautiful. And that is a total gift.
So, let’s invite God’s mystery into our lives and remember that the One we are entrusting ourselves to is Love itself, Creator of all. There’s nothing to fear.