beyond

While sipping an Americano with mocha syrup in my favorite coffee shop tonight, a conversation with my friend reminded me that God is far beyond what we can comprehend. We talked about truth, and how those who honestly seek it will find it. That makes the vastness of God exciting. I’ve realized that the prayer He loves to answer is the one where I say, I want to know You. Not what people say about you…but You.

But the more I see, instead of feeling like I’m closer to knowing everything about Him, I sense that there is so much more than I can imagine. The more I know Him, the bigger He gets.

All of these thoughts teeming in my mind are impossible, it seems, to pull together into a coherent post. However, it heartens me to think that even the writers of Scripture couldn’t put God into words (and they had the direct help of the Holy Spirit! Well, so do I, but I’m not writing divinely inspired words right now).

For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. (Ephesians 3:14-20)

Paul’s words are definitely better than mine, but he is still saying that he can’t describe who Christ is (love) because that surpasses, or “transcend[s] the reach, capacity, or powers of” (Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary) our human minds to understand.

Yet he prays that we will “comprehend” it and “be filled with all the fullness of God.”

Is that a paradox? How can we understand what is incomprehensible? I don’t know, but I think it is something like the awe I felt tonight when my friend and I talked. It’s the awe of knowing God but knowing that there is so much of Him I don’t know.

What I do know of Him is good. He is love, life, freedom, forgiveness, purity, beauty, peace, and truth. I don’t even understand what I do know about Him. Not really. But somehow it is enough for now, and it makes me want to know more.

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