The overarching challenge of my life, and I believe all our lives, can be summed up in one word:

Reconciliation.

Can I reconcile my aspirations with my limitations?
My hopes with my fears?
My beliefs with the facts?
My passions with my reason… and both of those with the reality that is far greater than either of them?

Can I reconcile who I wish to be with who I am?

Can I reconcile my trust in a loving God, with the suffering around me and within my own family?

That old question – suffering. It’s easy to theorise about until it wounds you personally. And I’ve been wounded less than many, but I still can’t resist picking at my scabs.

But I only go back over those hurts, the let downs and apparent failures of prayer, because I am compelled to wrestle with the truth, like Jacob, knowing I will probably get wounded again in the process but seeing the fight itself as a statement of faith:

‘I don’t know the answer but I do believe it exists and is worth fighting for’.

Because faith for me now is less about certainties and more about who I turn to in the midst of uncertainty.

I wrestle with Him because I want to understand, I want Him to show me how to make sense of it all, to give answers that will settle the questions and reconcile the tensions.

Or at least I tell myself that’s what I want.

Maybe what I really want is for Him to fight back so I can be be reminded there is someone much stronger than me.

For Him to deflect my questions so I can be reminded there is someone much wiser than me.

And for Him to stay close when I have finally finished beating his breast, to hold me in His loving arms, to remind me that I am reconciled to Him if not to anything else.

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