Watched the news a lot? Looked at Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram to see what others are thinking? Read your Bible more? Surfed the Internet for more information? Read more books or new magazine? Or maybe added a new Blogger or Podcaster that really gets it?
One of the harshest difficulties of this situation is not just that there’s an incredible avalanche of data and opinions about it, but that somehow we just can’t stop ourselves from looking for it. Not only are there endless sources of information, but Corona has us considering (and arguing about) everything from healthcare to politics, childhood trauma to social shaming, victims to heroes, what God is saying to what Satan is doing... and, to add to the mess, the contradictions multiply with each fresh news cycle and every passing day. Thus, the growing data bank, instead of clarifying, seems to ends up only adding to our confusion. And frustration.
Perhaps the willingness to overload ourselves with information speaks to something deeper than a quest for understanding? Maybe somewhere in the searching, even while obviously not finding, we hope deep down inside we might stumble onto the foundations of our new “normal.” And, even as we quest, we find ourselves growing ever more uneasy, as the data only adds to the gnawing sense that “normal” is quite likely still a long ways off... or worse?
I wonder who it was that first recognized the grim reality that the more things change, the more things stay the same? They didn’t need to be a genius to see it, but clever enough to recognize the irony of our cyclical ways. Old Solomon wasn’t probably the first, but he wrote a whole book of the Bible about it. We call it Ecclesiastes, and in it we find comfort and insight as well as things disconcerting and even startling, for unlike the God-inspired wisdom of Proverbs, the wisdom of Ecclesiastes was learned the Hard Way. Much of Solomon’s Ecclesiastes insight is the result of seeking after insight in just about every wrong place and practice imaginable. He tried it all. Ignored the wisdom he was known for. Ruined his life. Destroyed his family. Even fractured his kingdom.
While Ecclesiastes in not a particularly pleasant read, Solomon’s late-in-life conclusions have him circling back to this basic understanding: God is creator, His ways are the only true way, and If you’re confused about life, stay close to His direction. James, warning us that we’re inclined to double-mindedness -- trying to live out two contradicting ideas at the same time -- when we get into hard times. His solution is beautiful and simple:
James 1:5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.
Where are we going? Father knows and is just waiting to shower you with wisdom! Start with Him and His word. All you need to do is ask!
Working through the process of being the man Jesus intentioned for me... while we work through the process of becoming the church Jesus intentioned for us to be