If you are looking for my blog titled, The Contemplative Catholic Convert, you are at the right spot.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Not Better, But Best

With [Moses] I speak mouth to mouth, even openly, and not in dark sayings, and he beholds the form of the Lord.  (Numbers 12:8)

I have in the past envied Moses. I can’t count the times I have thought how much better my life would be if God met me like He met Moses, if He would sit on my living room couch so I could ask Him for direction. Or why I – or some in the family – struggle with whatever it is we struggle with.

I have also wondered if it wouldn’t be better for the world if God showed Himself as He did in the past.  Maybe ‘rend the heavens and come down, that the mountains might quake at His presence”, as Isaiah prayed (64:1). Or open the ground as He did with Korah and company (Numbers 16). If He did those kinds of things today, people would know who is really in charge.

Yes, I sometimes think it would be better for all of us if God did things differently.

And then I have a momentary sense of clarity – which usually lasts only for a moment. No, it would not be better, because if it would be better, our heavenly Father would do it. If it would be better God would rend the heavens, or open the earth, or sit on my living room couch and tell me all I want to know. 

But our loving God does not do what is ‘better’ because He chooses to do for us what is ‘best.’  For me. For my family. For our world.

God reminds us through Isaiah, For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,” declares the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.” (55:8-9)

I suppose, like all things related to God, it’s a matter of faith. When God is silent, it is not because He is unaware of what is happening in my life, or of my confusion, my pain, or my loss. No, He is silent because – even as He sits in the shadows – He is busy working out what is best for me, and not simply what is better. When evil sears across the globe and He is silent, it is not because He is impotent, but because somehow, in some supernatural way, He is working to cause all of it – even genocide – to produce the best for all of us.

I do not understand God. Sometimes He is a complete enigma to me. At other times He is an absolute mystery. But that does not stop me from pressing on toward the kind of faith that promises, despite the darkness, despite His seeming indifference, God wants not what is better for me, or for humanity.

He wants what is best. 


Barb Schoeneberger said...

Right on! And often we discover it in hindsight.

Rich Maffeo said...

very true about the hindsight.