I have a very wise mentor who once said to me that there are two truths that he clings to, two things he knows about God: God loves me, and I can’t control him. He loves you. You can’t control him. Since he loves you, you can anticipate his showing up and working in your life. Since you can’t control him, all your expectations may be frustrated. A sword may pierce through your soul, too. But sometimes, in the powerlessness of having all your plans fail, there is a peace. You are lost enough to be led, to let yourself be loved.
We want control, comprehension, cognition. But God rarely gives this to us. What he offers us instead is participation, participation in the mystery of His life and His plan. What He offers us is Christ, in whom God is clearly seen. And he is enough. Jesus exposes our expectations, he expands them, and ultimately he exceeds them. What he is doing is often different than what we expect. But what he is doing is always better than we can imagine.[Preaching Note: Honestly, I wasn’t very happy with this sermon once I sat down. But I have often found that the sermons I feel are the weakest are the ones that God uses most surprisingly. In any case, it conveys some important things that have been particularly important to me lately: things I need to hear.]