Written by: Kensie Story
“For those of us pursuing God, we must wrestle to hold both knowledge and wonder together in tension. Our God-given desire to understand and explain God and His ways must be balanced by our awareness that the more we know about God, the more mysterious (and “bigger”) He should become. Rather than removing mystery and tension, our knowledge of God should increase the amount of wonder and astonishment we feel.” (Mike Erre, Astonished)
I am naturally an analyst. I love reading, and researching. I love to think about how things work and try to figure them out. If I have a question I can’t answer on my own, I Google it. Knowledge is dessert for my mind.
As great as this type of personality can be, it can sometimes be a roadblock along my faith path. Not so much that it causes me to distrust God, but more that it causes me organize and label Him like I would any other topic I am researching.
I look at past experiences, take notes, and come up with formulas for how God works. Phrases like “God always” or “God never” come to mind often. Each experience I have with Him makes me think “Oh now I understand. Now I’ve got it figured out.”
Looking to the past for help isn’t a bad thing. We do need to use our experiences to help us in our present circumstances; however, the experiences or knowledge we’ve acquired can never be the unchangeable rule. The only unchangeable rule is God Himself.
“But you remain the same, and your years will never end.” (Psalm 102:27 NIV)
I’ve been walking quite closely with God for the past three and a half years. From the beginning of our relationship to now, He has taught and revealed so much to me. He has grown my faith in Him and understanding of Him in mountainous ways. But, it wasn’t until a recent season of struggle that He reminded me I still had much to learn.
He reminded me how much bigger He is than anything I will ever understand. He reminded me how much greater His love is than anything I could ever feel. He reminded me that no matter how much He reveals to me, no matter how many books I read or verses I study, no matter how many experiences I go through, He will always be a little bigger, a little deeper, and a little wider.
“And may you be able to feel and understand, as all God’s children should, how long, how wide, how deep, and how high his love really is… though it is so great that you will never see the end of it or fully know or understand it.” (Ephesians 3:18-19 TLB)
I absolutely love the way C.S. Lewis depicts this idea in his book “Prince Caspian”. Aslan is a lion and a metaphorical character for Christ. Lucy, one of the main characters has been searching for Aslan for a while and she finally sees him in the distance.
“She never stopped to think whether he was a friendly lion or not. She rushed to him. She felt her heart would burst if she lost a moment. And the next thing she knew was that she was kissing him and putting her arms as far round his neck as she could and burying her face in the beautiful rich silkiness of his mane. “Aslan, Aslan. Dear Aslan,” sobbed Lucy. “At last.” The great beast rolled over on his side so that Lucy fell, half sitting and half lying between his front paws. He bent forward and just touched her nose with his tongue. His warm breath came all round her. She gazed up into the large wise face. “Welcome, child,” he said. “Aslan,” said Lucy, “you’re bigger.” “That is because you are older, little one,” answered he. “Not because you are?” “I am not. But every year you grow, you will find me bigger.” (C.S. Lewis, Prince Caspian: The Return to Narnia)
Lucy doesn’t stop for a second, but just simply runs into the arms of Aslan. He embraces her, welcomes her, and she just gazes at him in awestruck wonder. As she is looking at him – remembering their experiences of the past, studying his eyes and his face, feeling the warmth of his presence – she notices that he looks “bigger”. Aslan quickly explains that he is bigger, but it is because she has grown.
This is the perfect picture of how it should be between our Heavenly Father and us. As we grow – in understanding, knowledge, experience, and faith – God should never look smaller and more manageable. He should always look bigger and we should always be more awestruck and more eager to learn.
“Who among the gods is like you, LORD? Who is like you– majestic in holiness, awesome in glory, working wonders?” (Exodus 15:1 NIV)
“Take a long, hard look. See how great he is—infinite, greater than anything you could ever imagine or figure out!” (Job 36:26 MSG)
I encourage all of you to thirst for and run after God. Read the scriptures; be fervent in prayer. Lean into God in every circumstance; tune into His voice. Let Him reveal more of His character to you because the God who cannot be fully known still wants you to know Him.
As you gain more knowledge and understanding, always remember that the current box you’ve placed God in is about to be broken down again. Like an astronaut exploring space, every time he reaches a new territory he realizes just how big space actually is. He realizes he will never be able to understand it all, but continues searching and seeking because it’s too amazing not to.
“O True God, You are my God, the One whom I trust. I seek You with every fiber of my being… Often at night I lie in bed and remember You, meditating on Your greatness till morning smiles through my window.” (Psalm 63:1, 6 The Voice)
“In the same way, we can see and understand only a little about God now, as if we were peering at his reflection in a poor mirror; but someday we are going to see him in his completeness, face-to-face. Now all that I know is hazy and blurred, but then I will see everything clearly, just as clearly as God sees into my heart right now.” (1 Corinthians 13:12 TLB)