Friday, May 24, 2013
Heavenly Wonder & Earthly Wander
Wandering that comes from wondering is a heavenly gift. There’s a great purpose to it. But what bothers me is that sometimes the desire for perfect understanding—“I’ve got to figure this out! Then I’ll be satisfied!”—eclipses the wondering and desire for Jesus himself, in whom is the deepest and purest and best of everything we want most. We might even get a sort of "knowledge high" or a “knowledge buzz” that can become a substitute for the satisfaction and love and freedom Jesus gives. We can tell we’re under this delusion whenever we are truly not satisfied (not at our core, not in the heart) for a prolonged period of wandering—a week or so, is my experience.
There’s nothing wrong with the desire for understanding that more knowledge offers, unless it remains bookish and prescriptive, and not related to truly knowing God and the astonishing formation of Christ in us that comes from the knowing. (That’s the goal—remember?) That bookish kind of desire for knowledge keeps it incomplete. It’s at a dead end. We’re cheated from awe and joy when that happens, because Jesus is why we wonder and wander—it’s him we want—and he perfectly completes us. He is the goal! He is the destination and fulfillment of wondering and wandering. Of course, he knows it. He set it all up for himself to be the answer to our longings. And, happily, we know it too.
The apostle Paul wrote to the Colossian church: “My purpose is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, 3 in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 4 I tell you this so that no one may deceive you by fine-sounding arguments.” (Colossians 2:2 -4)
So the question is, where is everything we want? It’s with Jesus. It’s with Him. That’s why you and I wonder, and that is the best direction for your wandering.
(This is a transcript from yesterday’s video, “Heavenly Wondering, Earthly Wandering,” and is for those who might rather read than watch. To see the video, click http://youtu.be/5vcrwOtLzyw.)