Wednesday, July 15, 2015

A Thought for Wednesday 15 July 2015

“It is not the task of Christianity to provide easy answers to every question, but to make us progressively aware of a mystery.  The Lord is not so much the object of our knowledge as the cause of our wonder.”  Kallistos Ware, Eastern Orthodox bishop, UK

But isn’t it always the “easy answers” we seek?  How often do we read the Scripture with an open and prayerful heart rather than to search for answers to specific questions or to try and prove a point to someone? 

We are typically not comfortable with an incomprehensible yearning from within that may well be the Spirit speaking to us, so we fail to simply submit to that yearning and let it become whatever it may be.  More often than not, we attempt to answer that yearning in a tangible way that makes sense to us and benefits us personally.  We let our own internal mechanisms lead us, often, in the opposite direction from that of the Spirit of The Lord.

What accounts for the dwindling numbers in the Church?  Why are so many leaving the Church altogether?  A quick search on the Internet will gain countless opinions and insights from “experts” who seem to think they know, and much of the problem they think they find is a lack of adequate “programs” for a particular demographic.  While there may be some truth to this, I think the problem the Church is experiencing goes much deeper.  I don’t think it can be reduced to just one thing, and I am confident the solution will never be humanly inspired.  

“Hope that is seen is not hope, for why does one still hope for what he sees?  But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance.  So the Spirit helps in our weaknesses.  For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered” (Romans 8:24b-26 NKJV). 

In other words, we must allow the mysterious to remain a mystery until The Lord sees fit to reveal it for the sake of the whole Church.  Of course there is one thing we must do: we must first actually care about the whole Church rather than just our own personal little corner of it.

That, I think, is the missing element; the concern for something beyond ourselves.  When we find it within us to care and to pray for the whole Church, we will find so much more than we ever thought we were looking for.  That is a Kingdom Promise that comes from trusting The Lord fully and unreservedly.



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