Instead we speak the wisdom of God, hidden in a mystery, that God determined before the ages for our glory. 1 Corinthians 2:7 NET
For years I struggled with the tension between who I knew God to be from his Word and the experiences of life challenges. Jesus the Healer walked the pages of the Scriptures, but sickness and disease ravaged those around me and chronic illness became my daily companion. I've heard all the arguments, studied the writings of scholars old and new, strived to find that place of faith.
Then one day I heard Bill Johnson from Bethel Church in Redding, California say a few wise words on the subject of unexplained suffering. One line captured my heart.
"I attribute it to the mystery of God."
God's wisdom is hidden in mystery, creating a divine tension which pulls me away from reasoning to surrender. My vision moves from the God-Image I have created in my mind to the God who dynamites the sides out of the box Ive kept him in. I have a choice to make. Surrender to the mystery or remain in the struggle.
My hands open wide, releasing everything to him.
Divine tension is displayed in the Lord's Prayer.
"Our Father, which art in heaven, hallowed be thy name."
He is our Abba Father, our loving God but he is still to be revered and held in high esteem.
"Give us this day our daily bread."
Our eternal Creator, to whom time is endless, no beginning or ending, except in Him, gave us this prayer. Ask for your daily provision. He knew we could handle no more than one day at a time.
The God who judges nations has the heart of a shepherd. A mystery indeed!
Do I want anything less? Would I want a God that I could figure out, that I could control? If that were the case, he would be a mere idol, shaped by man. Man doesn't have the greatest track record so the answer is clear-cut when I look at it through a lens untainted by earthly thinking.
Each morning this month, I worship with Deuteronomy 6. "The LORD our God, the LORD is One."
Hands open to surrender and embrace.
According to 1 Corinthians 2:7, God determined this for our glory. Ours not His. Now that is another mystery.