We live in a world where with just a few clicks you can have a pizza delivered, view a video of a piano playing cat, and apply for a mortgage. “I just googled the question, how much data is on the internet?” The short answer, a bunch. We have the power at our fingertips to know things that we didn’t even know we wanted to know. Knowing God however is another matter.
It is one thing to know the right things about God. The Bible is full of stories about God written by people with different experiences and world views. We can know the stories and yet not know God. I have met people who can cite chapter and verse from the Bible, and yet don’t seem to know God for themselves. I have also met people who don’t know much of what has been written about God, and yet seem to know God. How is it that we come to know God in such a way that we can discern what God is doing in the world or in our lives. I believe this is a gift of the Holy Spirit. I am not sure why, but sometimes I hear something about God that just doesn’t ring true to me. I can’t always put my finger on how I know it, but it just doesn’t seem to fit my experience of God.
I don’t think we can know God, until we know how to love like God. If you have ever been in love to the extant that you loose yourself in it, you start to know what it must be like for God. To have your heart broken after loving and then risk loving again begins to touch the edges of Gods heart for all humankind. When you learn to see others the way God sees them you start to experience both God and people differently.
I sometimes wonder why bad things happen to good people. I haven’t found a good answer. A bigger mystery is how God can stand it. How can God continue to love and trust a world that breaks God’s heart over and over again. I also wonder what it must be like for God to see when people really, “get it.” By “get it” I mean that they start to love themselves and others. When I see this kind of generous love that treats others, especially those who need it the most, with kindness, my heart overflows with joy. It inspires me to move past my own hurts and love again. In some way it heals my brokenness. Maybe it is in this hurting and healing and risking and trusting that we come to know God. Maybe it is in knowing God that we begin to love like God.