Thursday, April 02, 2009

super heros & super thoughts


Haaken went to a friend's "Super Hero" birthday party at Mustang Lanes last Sunday after church. . . . I missed him rolling his ball down the lane, but did get to see this great pic of he and Lily Cheney. Haaken LOVED his super hero gear and has been wearing it ever since. I love it when he wears it without shirt and his robust, stout little tummy hangs out. Kills me!

And then my friend, Roger, sent me this great piece from Oswald Chamber's My Utmost for His Highest, entitled Gracious Uncertainty . . .

Gracious Uncertainty

" . . . it has not yet been revealed what we shall be . . . "

—1 John 3:2

Our natural inclination is to be so precise— trying always to forecast accurately what will happen next— that we look upon uncertainty as a bad thing. We think that we must reach some predetermined goal, but that is not the nature of the spiritual life. The nature of the spiritual life is that we are certain in our uncertainty. Consequently, we do not put down roots. Our common sense says, "Well, what if I were in that circumstance?" We cannot presume to see ourselves in any circumstance in which we have never been.

Certainty is the mark of the commonsense life— gracious uncertainty is the mark of the spiritual life. To be certain of God means that we are uncertain in all our ways, not knowing what tomorrow may bring. This is generally expressed with a sigh of sadness, but it should be an expression of breathless expectation. We are uncertain of the next step, but we are certain of God. As soon as we abandon ourselves to God and do the task He has placed closest to us, He begins to fill our lives with surprises. When we become simply a promoter or a defender of a particular belief, something within us dies. That is not believing God — it is only believing our belief about Him. Jesus said, ". . . unless you . . . become as little children . . ." (Matthew 18:3 ). The spiritual life is the life of a child. We are not uncertain of God, just uncertain of what He is going to do next. If our certainty is only in our beliefs, we develop a sense of self-righteousness, become overly critical, and are limited by the view that our beliefs are complete and settled. But when we have the right relationship with God, life is full of spontaneous, joyful uncertainty and expectancy. Jesus said, ". . . believe also in Me" (John 14:1 ), not, "Believe certain things about Me". Leave everything to Him and it will be gloriously and graciously uncertain how He will come in— but you can be certain that He will come. Remain faithful to Him.

That's awesome! While I definitely want to guard and defend the truth, I want to be and do so much more. I want to believe Jesus, not just certain things about Jesus. . . . not passively, but actively, passionately, expectantly. My favorite line. . .

We are not uncertain of God, just uncertain of what He is going to do next. If our certainty is only in our beliefs, we develop a sense of self-righteousness, become overly critical, and are limited by the view that our beliefs are complete and settled.
That is really insightful and I've seen it over and over again in 15 years of pastoral ministry. . . that creeping-in self righteous, smug, legalism and dogmatism. Grace and daily trust in a certain God, who does uncertain things, must and will grow in us a humble, open, free grace toward others and ourselves.

Amen! Let it be in me, Lord!

1 comment:

Mommy Laity said...

Amen, Amen, Amen!!!