The Knowns and The Unknowns

Nothing is easier for me than getting stuck in a cyclone of “I don’t knows.” I spin around and around until I am totally exhausted and have gotten no where.

I don’t know why people get into debates on social media. I really can’t wrap my head around this one. To my knowledge, approximately zero people have changed their minds due to someone on Facebook lending a countering opinion. I have read a LOT of online arguments, and not ONCE have I read,

“You know, Steve, all of your statistics, links to other articles and sarcasm have totally changed my outlook on this candidate, so I agree with you now. Thanks! ”

I never know how my laundry will turn out. I have made it this far never separating colors and whites  or paying attention to what the buttons say, and I love the rush of adrenaline of mixing them and hoping for the best. #wifematerial

Half the time, I don’t know what I’m doing. Today, I drove off from school with a tub of scissors and a tray of papers and books on top of my car. Feeling fresh in my 2013 Honda Civic, windows down and going a smooth 14 mph, I see a student sprinting after my car screaming my name. As soon as a maintenance truck signaled for me to stop, the student reached my car and breathlessly said,

“I just knew it was you! I didn’t even have to see you! I told everyone, “Oh that’s just Ms. Wiley….she always does this.” (A good reputation is worth more than gold).

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More seriously, I don’t know the answers to some of the deepest, most profound questions in the world.

I don’t know why bad things happen to good people. I can’t answer that for you.

I don’t know everything about my faith.

In fact, there are times I feel like I have more questions than answers.

 

I don’t know how I have done some of the things I have done in my life. Even as a mature believer, I have made choices, said words and gone down paths that led to destruction. I can’t explain how, with Jesus living inside me, I am still capable of choosing darkness over light.

 

I don’t know what will happen if *fill in the blank* gets elected. I’ve read a lot of opinions on this in Facebook threads, but I just don’t know.

There is so much I do not know.

Being a follower of Jesus but having a broken, anxious mind over unknowns is something I have been trying to reconcile.

Much of my time and energy is spent balancing what I do know with the feelings of doubt and uncertainty  relating to the unknowns.

I live in this space between certainty and uncertainty. The pendulum swings back and forth, constantly battling for weighted space in my brain and heart.

The known and the unknown.

They wrestle tirelessly.

Which will get the upper hand in this moment?

Which will I allow to speak into my life louder today?

The known or the unknown?

There are so few things in my life that I can count on as ‘knowns’, because almost everything in this life is out of my control.

Literally anything can happen.

The knowns are precious to me. The knowns are my saving grace when the what if’s are circling and the unknown spin cycle is on “heavy load” (and a mix of colors, whites and hand wash only).

A few things I do know:

  1. The Word of God is true

The words of the Bible bring life.

I have seen it with my own eyes and felt it in my spirit.

My soul can only be deeply satisfied by one thing alone.

If His Word is true, then God is good. God is faithful.

I cannot explain exactly how He will use cancer for good. Or how He brings light out of our darkest places. But He will. And He does.

Because He is good. And amongst the death and fear and heartache, I know He is good.

I’ve tried being cynical. I’ve been intellectual about it. I’ve doubted and questioned and cried.  I’ve been logical about it.

But there is nothing logical about the love of God. And the love of God is the message of the Bible.

Because all the things I do not know or understand about God are microscopic compared to the vast, glorious love and immeasurable grace I come back to every time.

If you don’t know this love, find it in His arms. He is good.

2. God can and will turn my messes into masterpieces.

I have made some giant messes in my life trying to be in the driver’s seat.

Instead of obsessing over every hardship, decision or past mistake, what about throwing my hands up and understanding that He WILL have His way in me. No matter how much I think I am messing it up. If my heart is turned over to Him, I can’t mess it up. He will make sure of that.

God has redeemed my messes and used my failures. I have been humbled before God as I, once again, lay down what I thought was best for me and allow Him to pick up the pieces gently and lovingly.

He has used my story, my mistakes, my weaknesses to point others to His love through the ability He has to restore them in His faithfulness.

3. This is not all there is

This pain. This heartache. This brokenness.

This is all temporary.

When I put into perspective that this life is just a drop in the ocean, my priorities seem to fall back into place. For those who love Jesus, there is better and there is more and there is hope.

Hang on. Press forward.

There are ten trillion unknowns in this world. So much uncertainty and fear.

But if what God says is true, if you truly believe the promises of His Word- the promise that He loves you and He will fight for you and He will let nothing snatch you from His hand- how small, even if large in number, do those unknowns become?

If I believe the Word of God is true, His strength can shine through my weakness, and that this life is not all there is, what uncertainty even stands a chance?

The love that I know is more than enough to go to battle against any unknown that fights for brain or heart space.

I just know it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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