“I don’t understand how a black cow can eat green grass and give white milk, but it doesn’t stop me from enjoying ice cream!”– Vance Havner
If you’re like me, you want to understand everything. That’s ok. The Lord made people that way– to investigate, to research, to seek truth and understanding, to grow in knowledge and wisdom.
But some things go beyond our understanding. Hard things. Deep things. Stuff our limited brains can’t handle. People’s behavior and way of thinking (some husbands and wives are nodding their heads now ).
That’s ok too. In fact, it’s even better than ok, because it means there’s a GOD, Who is bigger than us! Who understands everything and has everything under control in the most loving way possible!
This releases me from having to attempt to know and understand everything. I can relax and enjoy the good stuff, and benefit from stuff I don’t know everything about (like turning on a light switch and getting light).
And I can put my burdens of the hard, sad, painful, stuff into the Lord’s infinitely strong, loving, arms.
This is the message of Phil. 4:6-7–
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Our understanding will always have boundaries. Boundaries of:
All of these limit our understanding, so that we’re always missing something.
There’s always going to be things we “don’t get”—
–Why the innocent suffer
–Why evil seems to triumph
–Why we have/had to go through pain that’s not our fault
–Why, why why?
Then there’s all the “What”s and “How”s we don’t get either!
–What to do about that person that keeps bugging me?
–How to get my garden to grow better?
–How to fix…?
–How to make my kids listen to me?
–How to make my parents listen to me?
For each person in this world, there’s an infinite number of questions. Now multiply that by the total number of people!
Overwhelming? Of course it is! That’s because none of us has all the answers (at least not the real ones).
If we did, we’d be… God! And then everyone would be blaming us when things happen that they don’t like or understand!
There’s only one way out of the frustration and overwhelm of our limited understanding—and that’s the peace that PASSES/TRANSCENDS/GOES BEYOND our understanding.
How do we get that? One word—TRUST. Trust the One who has UNLIMITED understanding, power, and love, to make everything work the way it should.
Ask any child who trusts their mom and dad enough to not worry about whether the bills are going to be paid, if they’ll have enough to eat, who will remember their birthday, etc. Their parents may worry, but they don’t. They’re sure their parents “got this”.
That’s what the Lord tells us who are HIS children—“Don’t worry. I’ve got this.”
“’Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?’” Mat. 6:25-26
We can trust Him and enjoy peace, or we can keep trying to figure it all out first.
So as much as I value understanding, I value the peace that passes understanding even more!
How about you? What are you trying to understand today that you can give to the Lord?