When questions swirl here
Float like hazy fog of morn
Will my heart trust love?
As I woke to a fog that covered everything in sight, I thought of the questions that faced me when this Rheumatoid Disease first struck. And I thought of the questions raised this week when Jayber decided that Seminary was not for him, in
Jayber Crow, by Wendell Berry.
This is week 2 of the study led by Michele Morin, over at her site: Living Our Days. Michele has such a beautiful way of gleaning the lessons and stories from every book she shares. You are welcome to join us in the study at any point along the way!
When little Jayber was left an orphan for the second time, he found himself being raised at a very strict orphanage. Over the years of sitting through many Bible classes, when questions rose in his heart for his future, he fearfully chose the path that seemed most likely to please His Maker: he chose the path to be a Preacher and attend seminary.
When the inevitable happened:
How to deal with his unanswered questions?
How to face the seemingly harsh WILL of GOD?
How to lead people when he, himself, didn’t know the way?
Jayber brought the questions to the most learned professor there, hoping to hear something solid from him. But what he heard only reinforced the questions:
“‘You have been given questions to which you cannot be given answers. You will have to live them out—perhaps a little at a time.’
‘And how long is that going to take?’
‘I don’t know. As long as you live, perhaps.’
‘That could be a long time.’
‘I will tell you a further mystery,’ he said. ‘It may take longer.'”
Berry, Wendell. Jayber Crow: A Novel (Port William) (p. 54). Counterpoint. Kindle Edition.
And I was taken back to so many times of questioning in my own life:
Why did we have to move cross-country, only to be pulled back home again?
Why did the small business we owned fail?
How could the bills mount so high when we had done everything that we thought was right?
Why did our children have to walk a road of suffering
when we, their parents, were the ones who needed to
learn the lessons?
How could God have allowed a church to break apart, and
relationships to be severed?
Why would years of healthy living suddenly
not make a difference when chronic illness struck?
I am sure you could add to the questions, if you were asked to participate. Sooner or later, we all will be faced with the “Great Unknowing.” And our FAITH will be put to the test. Can we bring those questions to Jesus? Will He answer them?
Jesus knew that even His own disciples had questions, and this is how He answered them:
“Jesus replied, ‘You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.’”
Or was it one more way to say,
“You just don’t get it!”
. . .
Jayber’s Professor held the key, in the few short words of his answer to Jayber’s questions:
“You will have to live them out.”
We were meant for relationship.
And relationships test our character,
prove the character
of the one we know.
Is our LORD able to be called upon
when we question HIS character?
Even David felt alone in his questions,
when he cried out to God:
“In my alarm I said, ‘I am cut off from your sight!’ Yet you heard my cry for mercy when I called to you for help.”
He was there with David,
And He is here with us.
When the questions arise
When the doubts swirl
When the truth is put to the test
Is there ONE who will stand?
Can we look beyond the trials
And speak with Job,
even as he recounted the depth
of the darkness he faced:
“I know that my redeemer lives,
and that in the end he will stand on the earth.”
Only as my heart
begins to trust
Only as my love
is poured on HIM
Will my doubts
be washed away
And filled with
all HIS light
May I pray with you today, my friend?
I ask for Your Spirit to be quickened in the hearts
of everyone who reads these words today.
May we all feel a freedom to offer
our questions to you.
May we know in our hearts
a surging of peace,
as You bring Yourself to us.
May we find the answers we seek
fully met in the LOVE of ONE
who holds the universe
and moves the stars,
who gave it all
Next week, I will be sharing more about my friend’s newest book:
It’s available for pre-order now!
I count it a great honor to have worked with Ifeoma in a small way to help in the editing process. You can find her blogging at Purposeful and Meaningful. Join me next Tuesday for a review of these words that God placed on her heart!
I am linking this week with: