Thursday, August 7, 2014

Between Shadow and Light

"The people who walk in darkness
    will see a great light.
For those who live in a land where death casts its shadow,
    a light will shine." (Isaiah 9:2; cf. Matthew 4:16)

God revealed as light


"Guard me as the apple of your eye;
      hide me in the shadow of your wings,"(Psalm 17:8)

" the shadow of your wings I sing for joy." (Psalm 63:7)

"You who live in the shelter of the Most High,
      who abide in the shadow of the Almighty....
[God] will cover you with his pinions,
      and under [God's] wings you will find refuge." (Psalm 91:1, 4a)

God's presence in shadow


Can there be shadow without light?
Is there a light which casts no shadow?

God is felt and found in darkness. God is not felt and not found in darkness.

God is loud, and God is silent.

God bursts forth in dazzling brightness, and God shrinks back in shadow.

God is hidden, and yet God is begging to be found.

Or, better yet, perhaps God is out to find me, you, us.

I am finding in this season--one in which I am intentionally deepening my spiritual life through meditation, prayer, reading, contemplation, and writing--that all these can be true of God. And yet, none of them fully so. 

My ideas of God cannot hold, contain, or control God. 

And having a "right" theology is not what is asked of me anyway.

The objective of faithfulness is not understanding God.

What is asked of me, of us, as people of faith, is to be found by God. To be found faithful is to have an open spirit and a trusting heart. A calculating mind is not a necessity. Our minds must be willing to receive new information about God, paradoxical and seemingly nonsensical. 

Oh God, make us ready to receive You. May we be found by You and sense Your presence in both light and shadow.


*Many of my thoughts today are from reading Henri Nouwen's Spiritual Direction:  Wisdom for the Long Walk of Faith, especially pp. 77-81.

No comments:

Post a Comment