As a person who is often chaotic, I have a bit of a mistrust of people with a completely tidy mind. There is something messy and ambiguous about life, and about faith, that makes me dubious about those who make audacious and sweeping assertions about what they believe and what God is like. I think that our words about God should deepen our perception about the nature of the Divine mystery rather than telling people what to think. I like the image of Isaac Newton who thought of a small boy playing on the sea shore, conscious of the great vastness of the ocean of undiscovered truth that surrounded him.

We can no more possess God than we can contain the ocean that surrounds us and faith is not something that we can own. Every word we speak about the divine nature is an approximation, borne of listening to wisdom and the experience of others. A tidy mind implies a settled mind, a mind that has come to rest and to some set conclusion about what is ultimately a vast mystery of inexhaustible meaning. Faith is the narrative of our longing much more than it is the story of our possessing.


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