Monday, August 29, 2011

There Will Always Be More

--


 "Every idea of Him we form, He must in mercy shatter.
 The most blessed result of prayer would be to rise thinking
'
But I never knew before.  I never dreamed . . .'" 

C. S. Lewis, Letters to Malcolm, Letter XV
    

Some quotes, like this one from one of the world's greatest storytellers, C. S. Lewis, grab your attention, won't let go, and yet remain a mystery.

I have found myself drawn to this one, so much so that without trying to memorize it, the words stay in my heart and ring softly once in awhile like a breeze-kissed wind chime when I think I get just the faintest  glimmer of it. In the span of a mere 250 pages of a book I've been meaning to read and finally got around to, the mystery is solved, and gone is the pride that kept it hidden from me.

I think I really thought I knew God . . . at least well enough to have a pretty fixed picture of Him.

I don't mean I thought I comprehended all of Him, clearly that would be foolish in the extreme, but I thought that what I knew of Him was not in need of adjustment, I thought that what I knew was pretty solid.  I supposed that maybe God would increase my understanding from time to time, a little here, a little there, but no big changes were expected, well, until Heaven, I guess. In the words of Gert Behanna, "That'll do just fine for a sin."

I just finished reading The Shack by William Paul Young. Many of you may have read it, I know I'm late to the party. If you haven't read it, I hope you will, and if you do, don't let anyone tell you the story ahead of time, just let the story tell itself.

After devouring the loveliness of this book in two days, the Lewis quote has come fully into focus for me.  I have had my idea of God gloriously shattered by this wonderful work of fiction.  How can anything be fiction that is so true and so truth-full. It made me laugh in surprised delight and cry for joy in God's goodness and I finished it aching for more, yes, more pages to turn, but more importantly, more glimpses of HIM. Oh the power of story!!

It will take me some time, and a few more readings to digest all the truth that is unfolded in this book. It occurs to me that Jesus  knew we would need something to flesh out the flat medium of black ink on white pages to help us know what He meant by the profound words He spoke. He frequently told stories, parables, to give an illustration or a scenario that would put muscle and skin on the bones of the words His disciples struggled to understand and that we read all these centuries after He said them. The Holy Spirit continues to gift storytellers in every age with the ability to write new stories out of old truth to give each generation a way to connect with Jesus as He really is (many of you know this because you ARE the gifted storytellers!)

The truth never changes, but the stories God uses to convey that truth are endless.

Through the wonder of story, my old static image of God has been shattered, not shattered like broken glass, but shattered like the stillness of a paused TV picture that is broken by pressing 'play' and setting the image in motion, or the way the night sky is shattered by the exploding beauty of colorful fireworks! I wait in eager expectancy (so different from expectation) to see how God will continually, for all time be surprising me with Himself! There will always be more!!

"Jesus did many other things as well. If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written."  John 21:25 NIV

As a reader of stories, and a lover of words . . . and the Word . . . and the Logos, I bend in humble thanks to the Word-God for His gift of story and for His storytellers who weave their fantastic tales only from threads of truth. I pray that each of us would allow Him to mercifully shatter our old ideas of Him and leave us daily breathless, saying, 'But I never knew before. I never dreamed . . .'

How has God used stories to help you understand Him?
When was the last time God shattered your previous image of Him?
___________________________________

Joining Ann Voskamp in counting His graces for her Multitudes on Mondays
I hope you'll join in if you haven't already!
In the counting of the endless gifts I say with C. S. Lewis,
"This also is Thou!"


#716-730
716. The glint of morning sunlight off high school football helmets in pre-season practice
717. The missing that means LOVE!
718. Grapefruit-flavored water! www.truelemon.com 
719. One brave little green tomato growing . . . finally!
720. Remembering to do something I sometimes forget
721. Hero Husband & She So Sweet home from their trip
722. Being able to get rid of stuff no longer needed
723. The bottom of the box
724. Finally getting my new computer all arranged--perseverance pays off!
725. A high five from my doctor =)
726. The joy of being around high school kids while volunteering at school
727. Having a 15yo daughter  who will hug me and even walk hand-in-hand with me front of her friends!  Come to think of it, my 20yo son will too!!  What a blessed momma I am!
728. The Shack
729. Sticking with my commitment
730. The things they do without being asked

Joining Michelle DeRusha for:

Joining L.L. Barkat for:
On In Around button

Joining Laura Boggess for:

and joining Jen and her Sisterhood:


A heartfelt thank you to these generous bloggers
who make these communities available!

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