Thursday, October 10, 2013

Sight and Knowledge--by Linden Malki

Peek-A-Boo is the first game we play with our babies--they learn that Mommy's still there even if they can't see her. As children grow, they often cry when they're separated from their parents, but most kids learn that a parent will come back and it's OK not to cry about it. Like so many situations we face, there is a line between clueless neglect and helicopter parenting. When I was growing up, my folks had foster children, usually one baby at a time. Many of them had parents that would dump them off with different people for random periods of time, not realizing that even a baby does know whether or not they are with someone they know. I recall one little girl who woke up screaming every night until she had been with us long enough to expect the same place and same people. On the other hand, I recall a family picnic where one of the moms kept up an annoying constant running nag at her 10-yr old.
We all have people in our lives that we care about but don't see every day. With Facebook and all the other side effects of technology, we can keep in touch with all sorts of people in all sorts of places. Today I got some very nice birthday messages from people that I haven't seen in some years, who live in all sorts of faraway places. But even if I don't see them every day, I know that they exist, they care about me, and I could call on them for whatever if necessary. One thing that is amazing is that historians and archeologists have found letters from every historical period between people that are often distant from each other. We send letters and messages in the faith that the person at the other end will be there and happy to hear from us. 

We have never lived in a world without God. We may not sense His immediate presence every moment, but we see His handiwork, we know what He has done. We may not even realize that He is there. He wants us our faith to grow even if we don't "feel" Him. In this imperfect world, feelings are not necessarily a good guide to reality. Think about how many things we know to be real that we don't see, but we have seen their effect and have reliable information. After Mother Teresa's death, it was found that she had long periods where she did not "feel" God, but she knew what He had called her to do and she did it. We have plenty of information about what He does want us to do, and we learn that it works. And we can see Him in other people whom we are serving.
We are told that there will come a time that we will see Him in way that we cannot now imagine--and whether that will be joy or horror is up to us. If we do accept His Lordship, we will see Him and the answers to all His promises. If we reject His authority, we will never see Him again--and that will be an emptiness we cannot now comprehend.

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