I think I grew up with a rather limited view of God.
Maybe we all do.
My view of God was limited to my own ability to understand him, the way he works.
The truth is, I don’t understand the way he works.
And the older I get, the more I realize there’s a lot about God I just don’t get.
Things that don’t make sense.
Things that I question.
But the one thing I’m becoming more certain of, is the fact that his ability to work – to love me – to reach me – isn’t limited by my ability to comprehend.
I ran across a verse this morning that took me back.
Over twenty years ago, the death of a student whose faith was questionable caused me to begin questioning a lot of things I’d thought I’d figured out about God – things I’d grown up being taught, and believing, were so important.
A friend pointed out a most obscure passage to comfort me at the time:
“And the Lord God made clothing from animal skins for Adam and his wife.”
New Living Translation
Okay, so it’s an odd verse to use to comfort someone who’s grieving and questioning, but it was perfect for me at the time because it helped me see a God who doesn’t always work the way I would – or in the ways I’ve been taught God should work.
This is the verse that follows all the curses God pronounces on Adam and Eve because they had disobeyed him, and precedes God banishing them from the Garden of Eden.
But there in the middle, in between the punishing and banishing, is a God who turns right around and clothes them.
A God whose correction wasn’t void of caring for their most intimate needs.
A God whose correction arises out of ongoing relationship.
If we view scripture in its entirety, as a whole story – which it is – then we know this is certainly how the story ends – with an infinitely loving God, who longs for relationship with his creation.
And the ways in which he works with each one of us, individually, may look very different from what I might expect. Or from the way he works with me personally.
But it will always be with great Love.
I needed to be reminded of that this morning. Maybe you do, too.