I grew up in church. Every Sunday church let out and the narthex (who came up with that word?) swarmed with people. A very forest of legs to my pint sized perspective. Legs, legs, and more legs. I remember latching on to a leg one time only to have it jerk away unexpectedly. I look up and lo and behold, the face that is attached to that leg is not in any way familiar. Wrong Dad!
Isn’t that the way it is in life, though? Overwhelmed by the tall trees and feeling lost I grasp the nearest thing that seems familiar, that promises belonging, that makes me feel safe. But, like a child I don’t look up to see who it belongs to. When it jerks away and doesn’t provide what I thought it would I finally look up and realize, hmm, that’s not my Dad.
The alternative is wandering around in the forest longer, turning my head to look up, and risking. Faith is risky but it’s riskier when I haven’t lingered and pondered in the forest. When I’ve latched onto an intuition of who God is but not onto God.
Faith is the assurance of things hoped for. There’s probably a lot of things I’m sure of that I shouldn’t be. And a lot more things to ponder in the forest than I do. Some are deep, some are shallow. Where do dinosaurs fit into creation? Why does God say yes to prayers for impossible parking spaces?
So, I endeavor to ponder more in the forest these days hoping for more glimpses of the face of God.