Sorry about the later post. The computer wasn't working last night so I couldn't type it up until now.
I have been thinking about walking in the Mystery. I ask myself, "How can I get used to walking in it?" Even though I "know" life is full of uncertainty, I still somehow believe that A+B=C. We've tested it, we've seen A+B=C in our lives over and over again. But at some point we see that C was not the result of adding A and B together. Contrary to what we are often taught, life is not a mathematical equation. God is full of mystery. Trying to understand all of it is like trying to fit an the entire ocean in a small hole in the sand. Romans 11:33-36 says, "Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How inscrutable are his judgements and how unsearchable his ways! For who has known the mind of the Lord or who has been his counselor? Or who has given him anything that he may be repaid? For from him and through him and for him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen."
I remind myself I am HIS creation, His servant. He is NOT mine. How can the clay tell the Potter how to form it? This somehow is a difficult concept to truly grasp. I was struck hard with it recently. I was frantic a few weeks after Stella went to heaven. My mind was on a roller coaster that would not stop. I was questioning everything, looking for answers about how and why everything in an instant just happened to Stella, to us. I started beating my brain over all the "should haves, could haves, would haves". Then all of a sudden I was literally knocked to my knees and my face hit the floor. It was as if something (or someone ;) ) just grabbed me by the shoulders and gave me clarity. This is what I heard inside :
"Who do you think you are? You are NOT practicing humility. To think YOU have any control over life or death. I AM the author of life."
Immediately, my words of frantic confusion turned into prayers of asking for forgiveness, praises to my God, and petitions of help. I was filled with an overwhelming desire to charge through this world, this life, for the greater glory bringing as many of His beautiful souls with me to Our King's thrown. I was put in place that day, that moment. I am thankful.
The question then becomes what I stated in the beginning - How can I get somewhat used to walking in the mystery that life is, that is God? How can I get used to being humbled enough to not finding all the answers, not assuming that C will result from A+B, and that it is okay? God gives us many tools and clues as to who He is and what He is like. He became man after all. He continues to reveal himself to us in the present. So regarding the answer to the question, one way I can try to get used to this mystery is by looking at the life of Jesus. Getting to know some of the nature of the Mystery, the nature of God. Through the Gospels and the New Testament, we are given a plethora of answers to who He is and what He is like. And a theme I have often talked about and will say it again, GOD IS LOVE. Therefore, by walking in the mystery, I am walking in Love, real love. This is not as easy to grasp as one may think. We have been served many lies through our culture, through our personal experiences on what love looks like. These lies are not real, they are not God. We must become fully aware of what real love not only is, but what it is NOT. Paul in I Corinthians 13:4-8 breaks it down perfectly to us. In short Love holds these qualities:
patience, kindness, rejoices in the truth, it bears ALL things, it believes ALL things, it endures ALL things, triumphant, selfless, humble, encouraging.
Things that love is NOT:
jealous, arrogant, rude, selfish, impatient\quick-tempered, boastful, seek to embarrass, rejoices over wrongdoing, fails.
We have heard this Scripture many times, especially at weddings. We had a children's book that just had this Scripture with wonderful illustrations. It was one of Stella's favorite books. However, if we really look at it and try to live and seek it, the power is unlike any other. If these qualities do not appear in our lives, in our relationships, in our homes than it is simply an imposter of Love. This is what I am walking in, when I strive to allow myself to walk in the mystery. Furthermore, as my wise husband reminded me, just because it is Love, doesn't mean it doesn't hurt. Jesus is love. He hurt. He hurt so much he died a torturous death for the cause of it. The hurt must be nothing compared to the glory to be revealed. For love only hurts in the present, rooted in selfLESSness, to fulfill a much more triumphant future.
The second truth that is helping me become more comfortable walking in God's mystery is what Jesus himself said in John 6: 37-39 "Everything that the Father gives me will come to me, and I will not reject anyone who comes to me, because I came down from heaven NOT to do my own will, but the will of the One who sent me. And this is the will of the One who sent me, that I SHOULD NOT LOSE ANYTHING OF WHAT HE GAVE ME, but that I should raise it on the last day." Therefore, anyone who comes to Him will NEVER be lost! In other words, His sole purpose of coming to do God's will is so that nothing will ever be lost. I will see my Stella again. I will be given back all and more of what I have given up. That is nothing but HOPE-FILLED news! Christ himself promises this!
The last tool I have thought of is prayer. Spending time with Jesus, helps me know him. Life is BUSY absolutely. There are many interruptions. But to become familiar with the Mystery, prayer is the only way I can get to know it, get to know Him. It is not easy to set that time aside, but it is imperative. Pope John Paul II when working in a noisy factory would spend hours on his knees in prayer. He purposely did this among such hectic-ness and noise so that He could learn to hear God's voice even in the loudest situations. Now, I don't do that, but I am learning more and more that setting aside time to sit in silence is the only way I am surviving all of this. And by disciplining myself to do so, I crave it more each day. I see myself looking forward to it, needing it, craving it.
In conclusion to these thoughts, my hope and belief is that by learning to walk in the mystery, A and B may not always add up to C. Instead, it adds up to INFINITY (I wish the computer had the mathematical sign for "infinity" on it.) The expected answer? No. The much greater answer? ALWAYS. Again, for from him and through him and for him are all things, to him be all glory forever and always. Amen.
Oh, please keep our family in your prayers this Wednesday, the 11th. It is Stella's birthday. Thank you.