06 May 2006
I was recently reading an article that my father wrote for a woodworking magazine. He writes about his career, explaining that engineers like to follow plans--they like to know how things fit together. Logic is logic for a reason--it makes sense that way. Later in the piece, he describes his fascination at watching a master woodworker building a chair by creating one part of the piece of furniture. Next, he built another part to fit the first. No plans, just creating. Logically, it shouldn't work. But somehow, it all fits together.
I had an experience a week or two ago that really left me wondering what I was doing thinking I would be heading into ministry. One of those classic "I-can't-believe-I-did-that" moments, where you look at yourself and think "I'm worthless." The actually happenings of the event are beside the point. What matters is that I was left with that question a lot of us ask ourselves at one point or another--what am I?
About two days after, I was (typically) avoiding work and checking away messages. One of my favorite screennames to check was online, so I dutifully rightclicked and scrolled and left clicked and read what he had to say that day. This person always has such beautiful insights into life, God and the Christian journey. I thought about how much I enjoyed his away message, so I decided to IM him to let him know. Later that night he sent me an email.
He asked me how things were going and I told him how great Copenhagen was in addition to how I was really questioning what I wanted (or needed) to do with my life. In that email, I wrote this:
How can I pull crap like this and still be a spiritual leader? Do I even deserve it?
A week or so later (it's exam time, you know how it goes), he replied with this:
How can you pull crap like that and still be a spiritual leader? Do you even deserve it? You do need leading most of all. You don't deserve it. And I guess that's what grace is - being called to this thing that we aren't deserving of or capable of. And with grace I guess comes discipleship and actually dying and letting Christ live, and living "a life worthy of the calling you have received."
But you see, it doesn't make sense. That's not logical. If you don't deserve it, then you don't deserve it. End of discussion.
I think that logic is a big issue at the heart of why many people reject God. They don't want to believe because it doesn't make sense. It's not logical. Here's the catch. It isn't about logic. In fact, it is the completely illogical that calls us to God.
God sent a man to the earth to die for us. Right, that makes sense. That man was born of a Virgin? Check. And He rose from the dead three days after he was definitely dead? Not possible, right? Not according to logic. But sometimes God calls us to replace logic with trust--trust in God.
In a world where it is terrifyingly hard to make sense of anything, maybe it's time that we redefine logic--or, if not redefine it, give it new parameters. Perhaps logic shouldn't be understood in human terms, in an earthly context. Maybe logic needs to be seen in Divine terms beyond the human.
Believing that I and you and everyone on this planet is a beloved child of God is extreme. God loves terrorists? God loves the unlovable. Because God is love, and we are all reciepients of that love, it's logic.