We ask the questions. No—it’s more accurate to say we often demand the questions.
Why?! When?! Where?! How?!
We want to know—we think we need to know. Why does God do what he does? How can these things happen? When will God make this change? We want to know and it can easily consume us.
When did knowing it all become so much a part of how we live in faith? Is this really living in faith at all?
Waiting for the Messiah, looking to celebrate his coming on such an unsuspecting day and to such an unsuspecting people—it’s all become so usual and pedestrian to us. After all, it happened a long, long time ago. And to a people that can hardly seem real in our day to day bustle of the now. But when he came there was no one who guessed it would be then and in that way. It was completely off the radar of logic and the typical. It was undreamed of. A baby? To a poor couple of nobody’s? Who could have guessed?
And yet…people believed. Not all, for sure. Not even many. But some—the faithful lovers of God who loved him desperately enough to trust him with the outlandish.
Luke’s gospel records the obvious lack of understanding that came even with John’s coming. John—the one who was to prepare the way. Even his coming was not well understood, but it was believed by many to be of God; to be something significant.
I want to believe like that. As I wait for the coming day of celebration, I want to believe without demanding understanding of it all. I want to accept even as I ask, “What will this turn out to be?”
When did understanding become our prerequisite for faithful following? Can we peel it off the hard exterior of our hearts? More rightly, will we ask God to tear it away? Perhaps this time of waiting is our perfect opportunity. As we wait we can learn again what it is to trust; to live by faith; to accept that the God who sent his only Son is not limited by our ability to make sense of it all.
Day Eleven Reading: Luke 1:57-66
As the people heard the truths about Zechariah and his son John they “laid them up in their hearts.” How can this concept affect the way we read and study the Bible today?
Zechariah, and all the people who heard of what happened did not necessarily understand (v.66), but they did believe. Is there room in your life for belief where there is not complete understanding?
Prayer—Lord, as we wait for the celebration of your coming we pray for faith to believe in you, even when we don’t always understand the how or the why of your actions.