Not Knowing

Snow in the AMBS courtyard, spring 2007.

By David Boshart, Ph.D., President

This morning, a beautiful snow lay thick on every surface. The morning was clean, bright and silent. Yet it is another day, in a long string of days, with this virus threatening. The Lenten journey through the wilderness this year is all about not knowing. We don’t know how long this time of distancing will last. Our existence feels like desert and worry about illness and lack. We are tested by all this not knowing. 

This week we hear Jesus say in John 11, “I am the resurrection and the life. Those who believe in me, even though they die, will live,  and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die.” Jesus asks Martha, “Do you believe this?” That is really a way for John, the Gospel writer, to ask us the same question. In the journey of not knowing, can we trust that Jesus is the resurrection and the life? 

In the psalm for this week, 130, we are given words to work out our belief and our unbelief during this time of not knowing.

Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord.
     Lord, hear my voice!
Let your ears be attentive
    to the voice of my supplications!

I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
    and in his word I hope;
my soul waits for the Lord
    more than those who watch for the morning,
    more than those who watch for the morning.

Waiting in a time of not knowing is really hard. The test of our faith is found in the affirmation of our hope. 

O Israel, hope in the Lord!
    For with the Lord there is steadfast love,
    and with the Lord is great power to redeem.
8 It is the Lord who will redeem Israel
    from all its iniquities.

God is steadfast in love and powerful to redeem. As we begin another week of not knowing, my prayer is that God would grace each of you with God’s steadfast love. May God grant you grace to live by faith and in hope that God has great power to redeem us in spite of all we cannot know.  May the peace of Christ be with you all!