Friday, January 07, 2005

And a Cheer Goes Up

The disasters of recent weeks and months - War, Tsunami, Starvation and Suffering on global scale has no doubt brought many of us to the point of asking, "Where is God in all this?" For many, God never comes to their mind, unless it's in the form of vulgarity. For others, God occupies recesses of bias so thick that not even He can believe the anaroebic nature of its environment. Still, others have voiced their belief that this is God's judgment on a sinful world.

There is no doubt our society (the world we live in) is a sinful, wasteland - of which even Sodom & Gohmorrah would be embarassed and is seemingly sliding into a finality of moral oblivion. And few sane individuals will argue against the existance of a Superior Force - whether they will refer to God as being that Force, or not. But all continue to ask the question, "Where is God - if He/She is so benevolent and kind? How could He allow such unimaginable pain and suffering; and upon such impoverished peoples?"

Students of the Bible comb the scriptures with incredible scrutiny in an attempt to get a glimpse into God's own personal calendar for events. And, to date, no one - despite many attempts otherwise - has been able to, break-the-code, unravel-the-knot, reconstruct-the-timeline - or whatever word-picture you wish to employ - the WHEN element of events prophecied and promoted within the pages of the Bible.

Some promote the 'knowing of such' is not in man's power; others believe such knowledge is only for a 'select few'; and those who believe God and the Bible are 'works of fiction', just sneer at anyone who would be so 'unsophisticated' to believe the 'mythology'. Yet, all seem to ignore the obvious - stated in the very words of God, Jesus the Christ - the very Son of God: a rather 'direct link to the "know" ', in Matthew 24:36, (NKJV)

"But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only".

Why then are we so curious - even in the face of an obvious pronouncement telling us we cannot know what so many so desperately seek? Why then do so many continue the search?

I recently read a passage that just struck me as a very good 'word picture' for both WHY we seek and WHY we should not worry about being unable to know it. In fact, we should be thankful that we cannot know it.

In his third book, Fishing Lessons: Insights, Fun, and Philosophy from a Passionate Angler,
nationally known psychologist and award-winning writer, Paul Quinnett brings to us - a lesson from his observations while fishing - that paints a surprisingly clear picture - that offers a very simple answer, without bias or intent, this very quandary.
"Here were millions of dollars' worth of boats and tackle and guide fees at work in the estuary, and yet the salmon swam under us and past us and beyond us to the river's mouth, ignoring our offerings while taking one last herring in a final feast before mating and dying.

I mused to myself that while man has mastered the day and the hour of the salmon's return, and even the very stream a given salmon will climb to spawn, there remain these wonderful limits to our knowldege and skill, these knotted mysteries we have yet to untie. So long as we angle for sport alone, it is good that the fishes can still humble us.

Then I saw the eagle.

Others saw it too.

People in the boats near us craned their necks, pointing upward. Some stopped fishing to watch.

The eagle turned slowly in the sky.

The eagle turned slowly in the sky.

Then, suddenly, it folded its wings and dove.

Then it rose up again, a bright-silver salmon shivering in its talons.

From across the vast fleet, a great cheer went up."

It is interesting that Christ gathered most of those men who became the Apostles, from the fishing profession. He even told them all they would be, "... fishers of men...". So, maybe we should take a que from the words of Dr. Quinnett and note that even IF we DID, "... know the day and hour..." we'd still be lacking the proper 'lure' to attract the prize we seek. And yet, if we follow the simple principle of, 'let go and let God', we then allow God's plan to work ... as He planned it: not as we want it. Then, just as the eagle was able to catch - in the midst of all the 'knowledge' - what all the humans sought without success - we, too will be rewarded with a miraculous front-row observation/participation seat to the ultimate... "Cheer that Goes Up".

Uncle Garth