Can You Discover the Depths of God?
Can you discover the depths of God?
Can you discover the limits of the Almighty?
They are high as the heavens, what can you do?
Deeper than Sheol, what can you know? (Job 11:7--8)
This hurricane season can sure get you to wondering about God and the mystery of His work on this earth. As I watched Gustav bring its massive presence towards our gulf states, I thought of the places it had touched outside our borders. I prayed for the people of Cuba who have so little and could lose all without much hope of restoration. My heart went out to the people of New Orleans, where I have made three trips and been amazed by the progress each time. How could all our hard work be washed away? Why do people dealing with Post Traumatic Stress have to face this again? It was easy to have questions about why a hurricane could be headed right back to those vulnerable people in this world.
That Sunday before the hurricane hit and left us much less beaten down than we expected, I went out to sit quietly observing what God had to show me from the confines of my small front porch. I was surprised by what I found.
My porch is not very large, so I believed not much could be happening here. I didn’t count on seeing very much. When I was still and quiet for only fifteen minutes, a whole world of lessons opened up to me. Of course the expected happened on this porch; my son’s cat came running for his breakfast, but uncharacteristically he didn’t want to play. My attention was free to notice how many bees were happily feasting on my purple sage in bloom. I heard them faintly buzz, but until I was still and quiet I couldn’t see that it was not just one or two, but perhaps 20-30 who were as delighted as I was to enjoy the array of purple that only graces us a couple times each year.
I noticed something else. The ants—tiny ones—are never break from their efforts to receive and sustain life. They eagerly went about their instinctual obligation without ever a sense of weariness or bad attitude toward their mundane adventures.
Ever the worker myself, I began to pick the clovers that were not meant to live in my flower beds, but even from this an answer came. The clover one foot away had sprouted from the one I just pulled; you wouldn’t think it looking from above. They appeared to be unrelated patches of clover, but under the earth they were connected by one root.
This is the thought that comforts me most. Life is a mystery. The hurricane season has taken its toll. On the outside you ask, How can a loving God allow for it? But underneath are mysteries we cannot see, or understand. When we can’t know, we must trust.