Something that affects me greatly is just not having an answer. I usually pride myself in my eloquence and my ability to understand situations. I always have an answer for people’s problems. I am somebody who loves to help people solve their problems. I am somebody who loves to help people perceive their own situations better. But there are times when my eloquence and my perception… just fall to the ground in futility.
The other night, a guy who heard me share that there are times that I am angry with God and that there was even a time that I decided not to believe in God decided to call me. There was this trembling in his voice, like the tired trembling one hears from somebody who has cried for a whole night. He proceeded to tell me that he stopped going to church 8 years ago due to an affair that split his mom and dad’s marriage. He and his family decided to stop believing in Jesus. He said, “The bible says ‘Ask and I shall answer’, but God didn’t answer me. I’ve been asking him to reveal himself to me for all these 8 years, and he hasn’t answered. It seems like your anger is similar… but really- how did you come back? What made you want to come back to Christianity, to a God that seems to never answer back?”
Something broke in me. Half of it was because of the desperation in his voice. Half of it was because I really didn’t have an answer for him that would satisfy. I am not clear myself how I came back to “know God”. One day something just clicked, and I remembered. I remembered God was a God that redeems, even the deepest brokenness in the world. I remembered. But it was not logical, because God is seldom a God of (our) logic. I can only attest it to the Holy Spirit coming in with his gentle but undeniable whisper wooing me with, “Return to me. Remember who I am. Remember that I am a God worth trusting.” It broke me so much that it was so hard to articulate this to this person so burned and hurt by the silence of God, because the only thing that brought me back was not the answers and wisdom of man, but by the beckoning of a God I had become too bitter to listen to but refused to be silenced by my hurt. But for this desperate friend, there were no answers.
These days, I say that I revel in the un-understandability of God; in His mystery. It leaves me dumbfounded and in awe. I have learned to find satisfaction and joy in the deep otherness of God that exceeds every single frame of cultural reference and framework of knowledge. But there are times I just knew the answer.
The questions and brokenness of a world crying out for more than this reality of depravity can simply overwhelm me sometimes. It’s like when you approach a mountain in a car ride- it looks really small from far away. The mountain could be less than a hand-length in height. But then you fall asleep as the trip gets longer. Two hours later, the driver will wake you up. The car has stopped. He just taps you. Not a word. The music of the radio is no longer blaring from the speakers. And before you is the same mountain. It is daytime, but it feels like dusk because of the enormous shadow cast by the heights of this behemoth. You can’t tell if your heart has stopped or if it is racing with awe. And the driver will whisper… “Let’s climb it”.
The sheer walls of the mountain tower above. Can it be done? Unconquerable. Impossible. Suicide. My attempt at climbing this mountain could cost my life. I do not feel prepared.
The thoughts race through my head as I stand in utter shock of how huge this mountain is. Our mountain is the accumulation of the brokenness and weeping of a world crippled with unanswered prayers, families torn apart by affairs, diseases that can’t be healed, scars that cannot be erased, poverty that destroys our ability to dream, rejection that numbs our ability to feel accepted… all petrified into an unmovable pinnacle of the depravity of humanity.
It seems the more I know the magnitude of God and His kingdom, the more I know the height of the infirmities of this world. It brings me to a realization of how small I am and it becomes obvious that the perception of my God must be grown and stretched again in order to conquer the unconquerable cliffs of this world of broken dreams and pain.
God- I need you. Without you I have no voice, I have no feet, I have no hands. I am crippled and paralyzed by the enormity of this world’s heartache. God, would you fill me up again- You are my portion, my cup. Break the curse of paralysis in my heart. In You I have strength to stand up even in my utter weakness and declare to that mountain that it SHALL NOT HAVE POWER OVER THIS WORLD and pick up that pickaxe and start to chip away at it, one stone at a time.