I was considering Stephen Hawkings recent declaration that there is no God. Stephen is the brilliant scientist who has tragically been crippled physically by the disease, ALS. He has gone back and forth on God’s existence and recently landed on no-God. Given his incredible intellect, it appears on its face that we should consider his conclusions regarding the divine with a certain weight. If our knowledge of God were solely an intellectual pursuit, that would be true.
God is Spirit and describes Himself as such. The way that He communicates with us is Spirit to spirit; deep unto deep. He connects with us at a level which is not processed by facts and data, by personal connection. He has not and is not attempting to be understood or figured out intellectually, but known personally.
To know God, we actually have to come to the end of ourselves, including our capacity to completely grasp the mystery of God. It’s a paradoxical relationship where life is found in death to ourself and understanding is in our willingness to not know. Less is more, first is last, dead is alive. It’s upside down and backwards to the way we value our intellectual abilities.
No matter how brilliant you or I or Stephen Hawking are, we are limited. There are things that exceed our ability to know and understand them. We can stretch, but we can never obliterate the boundaries of our capacity. When we rely on anything with limited capacity to analyze the limitless, eternal nature of God, we will always come away frustrated. If we could completely figure Him out, it would not require faith.
Faith is acting with confidene in a place that is not knowable. Faith does not come without battles that include questions, concerns and doubts. It is a choice despite the questions, concerns or doubts. It’s a position that takes inventory of the deepest parts of our knowing and acknowledges that we don’t know it all. We allow our ability to be sacrificed for a greater reality than our senses can comprehend. It’s a death to us and our limitations to allow Him to live in His infinite nature by our faith through us.
His promise is that if we will come close to Him, then He will come close to us. The ball is in our court for the first move. If we decide to evaluate, calculate, pontificate or other “ates” as we consider the risk of chasing Him, we’ll never step in. We’ll never get to him via mental gymnastics. It’s a leap of faith to be caught by the love of a Savior to be restored to relationship with a Father. It’s scary and crazy and so very worth it.