Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Second Story

This is the intro to my upcoming podcast titled "Second Story." Listen now!

Monday, November 16, 2009

I love not knowing!

I like to study the Bible. I admit it, I'm a bit of a nerd when it comes to theology and biblical studies. So last week a good friend of mine asked what part of the Scriptures I was reading and what I was learning (Thanks Tom!). I responded "Joshua and Judges because those stories challenge my understanding of God more than any other stories." When I read about how God directs Israel's leaders to annihilate whole communities of people it's hard to look at God and see him as merciful, loving, and welcoming of all. I must confess I feel a bit awkward telling my friends and neighbors that this God, the one in whose name Israel wiped whole cities from the face of the earth, is the God I serve. I just wish God's love and grace were more evident to me in these passages, but they're not. As you can imagine, this creates quite a bit of tension for me. But perhaps that's a good thing.

Consider the alternative: I, in my finiteness, know and understand the whole nature of God and am able to objectify God by pointing to a golden-framed portrait of Him and declaring to all that "this is who God is and this is what he's like." Period, done, case closed! Knowing things about God is certainly beneficial, but if I knew EVERYTHING there was to know about God, well, that would put me in a position reserved for only 1 person, God himself. That's definitely not where I want to be.

Reading Joshua and Judges provides a good check for my head and my heart. They remind me that the journey of faith is more about trust than it is about truth.

I'm grateful that these difficult-to-understand passages are included in the Scriptures and that I don't completely understand what God is doing in these stories. I actually find comfort in not knowing what God is up to in these stories, because if I did, it would not be good.