"I would rather live in a world where my life is surrounded by mystery than live in a world so small that my mind could comprehend it.”
--Henry Emerson Fosdick
One of the characteristics of God that I find most comforting is the mystery…the knowledge that as long as I live, as spiritually mature as I manage to get (and I’m a long way off yet), as much studying and praying and worshiping as I’ll ever do, I’ll never know everything there is to know about God. God’s just bigger than anything I could ever imagine, far beyond the reach of human understanding and creativity.
You’d think the mysterious nature of God would make me feel small or anxious, that it would be easier to feel that I understood how God operates in the world, that God was predicable…and that’s the problem. It’s easier for us to wrap our minds around a God who likes who and what we like, who behaves in ways we can always anticipate and understand, who never surprises us…but what kind of God would that be?
When we take away all the mystery, we’ve lost sight of who God is, and replaced our God with a god in our own image. When we delude ourselves in to thinking that God will always behave in a way that makes sense to us, that we can predict, we’ve made God too small.
I don’t believe that God is fickle or capricious…but I find it comfortable and comforting to think that God is bigger than my understanding, my weakness, and my imagination. I like that I don’t know all there is to know, that there’s still more to learn about God…there’s still room to grow closer.