The Clerk’s Corner, by Rob Riehl, clerk of session, ruling elder
It was someone I hardly knew. A person who existed on the fringe of my life, not even to be considered an acquaintance. I made no effort to engage in any level of conversation with this person. I went my way, and this person went his way. We were aware of each other but did not really know each other. What we knew of each other was basically that we both existed –nothing more than that! And it was that way for many years. But one day an unanticipated personal crisis occurred. When those closest to me were unexpectedly “unavailable”, I felt the shock of instant isolation rendering me feeling helpless and hopeless! My world was crashing around me and my life shattered. Did anyone care enough to reach out to me?
Miraculously a “Good Samaritan” somehow found out about my situation, called me, and followed up with a visit. it was this stranger who I have kept at a distance. It was both unsettling and yet comforting to have someone seemingly come out of nowhere to be there for me! Over time, with several visits and meaningful conversations, we gradually came to know and appreciate each other more favorably. As these conversations evolved, we built a level of trust whereby we could share our deepest fears and concerns about life and our future. A personal relationship had been formed to the point that I can now say that this person is indeed a faithful, trusted and true friend. Who would have thought that my life could turn around so dramatically because of the lovingkindness of one goodhearted person who mysteriously entered my life and became my best friend!
Does this revelation resonate with you –or with someone you know? This disclosure is not uncommon; many of us have come to know God in this way. In the testimony above, God is the mysterious person who knows about us, cares about us, and loves us unconditionally.
He can enter our world quite suddenly and change the direction of our life. If we truly seek Him, He will respond! He desires us to abide with him both now and into eternity. All we need do is to surrender to his loving call; he will be with us!
Though we can know God through his creation and his revelation, we can know him personally through Jesus Christ. When we have self-identified with Jesus, we can truly say “What a friend we have in Jesus”! And yet, because of who God is, we cannot on this side of Heaven comprehend the fullness of God or understand the seemingly paradoxical aspects of his being. Abundant mystery remains! And what is a mystery as it pertains to God? Theologically, a mystery is a religious truth incomprehensible to human reason and knowable only through divine revelation. Another definition: “Some mysteries are not questions to be answered, but are just a kind of opaque fact –a thing which exists to be not known.” God has made sure that we know enough about him for the present; the rest shall remain mysterious until the afterlife.
There are many questions one could ask about God. Do you have any questions about God? Ask yourself these questions: Are you curious about God? Do you ever wonder about him? Have you sometimes doubted God? Do you know what he is like? Do you know what he does? Have you ever wondered why he created us? Do you know what he expects of us? Do you know what he has planned for us? Do you trust God? How is God present in your life? Why do you suppose God is invisible? Why is he so mysterious?
Do you have some unanswered questions about God? Ponder this before you answer: “If you could ask God just one question — and you knew he would answer — what would you ask him?” ***
Have you considered praying to God for the answer to your question? Have you listened for his answer?
In September, our church will be participating (with several area churches ) in a six-week program entitled “The Explore God Project”; it is about knowing God –and hopefully answering your questions about him. Details to come!