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Sunday, December 16, 2012

The Way It Is

Often I've heard the saying “The Way It Is—Is the Way It Is.” Today I would like to shade that crisp saying a little. For we are confronted constantly with matters that are unsettled. For example, we can all agree that “Kindness is respect, dignity, compassion, and humility.” This is something we can all agree on. Where we find unsettled areas of disagreement is exactly how in given situations respect, dignity, compassion, and humility can be effectively conveyed. For example, when Jesus in anger overturned the tables in the temple, was he devoid of humility or filled with it? Beyond this difficulty in which human behavior is driven yet sometimes divided by abstractions, we have the limitations of human insight. A way of putting this is to remark: “The way it is—is the way it is...but no one fully comprehends the will or workings of God.” That is to say, we never exist within a closed system—it is always open to the unexpected and indeed is currently replete with the unexpected and unknown. Finally, of course, all of us are called upon to do our part in changing the world. We are all fully enlisted in this effort. But even with this firm calling, does any of us have a clear picture of where exactly this will take us? Or what precisely is called for, or much of an inkling of what will be the results, or the chain of unintended consequences that will follow? While we have a firm commitment, we must always be open to phenomena concrete and abstract—or to put it another way, immersed within the world we must always be open to the leadings of the Holy Spirit. Thus, no doubt “the way it is—is the way it is.” But no man dare venture the notion that he has other than a partial and often paltry comprehension as to what it is.

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