A kindergarten teacher was observing her classroom of children while they drew pictures. Occasionally, she would walk around the room to see each child’s work.
“What are you drawing?” she asked one little girl who was working diligently at her desk.
The girl replied, “I’m drawing God.”
The teacher paused and said, “But no one knows what God looks like.”
The little girl replied, “They will in a minute.”
God must think we’re kind of funny when we try to identify Him or his plans. Or figure out what the platypus is.
I remember several years ago that someone contemplated the vastness of the universe. Imagine, they pondered, that we live in a solar system that we barely know anything about. That solar system is part of a galaxy. In fact, it’s one of several galaxies. And the universe is all of the galaxies. So…you’d think that somewhere out – at the end of all of that – is…a wall. Right?
The question, then, is…What’s on the other side of the wall?
The “other side of the wall” is the stuff that I think God is all about. We have those things we can examine and may some day be able to identify, label, and categorize. But what about the stuff on the “other side of the wall”?
People had ideas of what Messiah would sound like, look like, act like.
Do you think they expected their deliverer to be raised in the home of a carpenter – or in the home of a soldier or politician?
Do you think they expected him to “slum it” with lepers, Samaritans and tax collectors – or with society’s elite?
Do you think they expected him to actually encourage his brothers and sisters to walk the extra mile for the army that oppressed them – or to overturn that same government, to begin an insurrection?
Do you think they expected him to go to his crucifixion without a hearing or a single protest – or to defend himself and finally rise up to make his stand?
Do you think they expected him to come back to life after three days in the grave?
Now, that is the stuff God’s about! That mind-blowing, are-you-serious, how-is-that-even-possible stuff is absolutely what God is all about.
The Hebrews knew the stories of God’s miracles and deliverance – the exodus from Egypt, the parting of the Red Sea, manna from heaven, Sarah’s conception of Issac, crazy Noah and his ark, David’s unlikely defeat of Goliath. But even then, they were determined to fit God into a man-designed box. Just like we do today, they considered very human, very limited ways that Messiah would – or could – come to them.
But Messiah didn’t come in a box. He came in a womb.
Now, that’s outside the box! But outside the box is exactly what we need because we’re not fighting a war that’s “inside the box.” The war is not about the possession of land or resources.
The battle is for our souls, for eternity.
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Ephesians 6:12 (NIV)
And the battle?
But as it is written: “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man the things which God hath prepared for them that love Him.” 1 Corinthians 2:9 (NIV)
Like nothing we’ve seen before or can possibly imagine with our five senses and limited imaginations.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the Lord.
As the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:8-9 (NIV)
But how unbelievable is it that God would come to us as a baby – vulnerable and dependent, yet so very embraceable.
God came down to be embraced. (And if that’s not love, I don’t know what is.)
So what has God got planned for us? When he makes a way where there seems to be no way, what will it look like? If it’s like nothing we’ve seen before, if it’s a new thing, it’s going to make the platypus appear logical and mundane. It will have colors and scents that we can’t imagine because we’ve never seen them or smelled them! It will be the stuff on the other side of the cosmic wall, and it will take our breath away and feel like home at the same time.
And I have a feeling that God is looking forward to seeing the look on our face when we see it.