Beyond Understanding

A big problem I’ve constantly had in my Christian walk is the need for understanding.  As I’ve said many times, I am an analytical person.  It is hard for me to commit to anything if I do not have a very good understanding of it.  This naturally creates a problem for me in turning verses like Proverbs 3:5 into a reality.

“Trust the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.”

But Lord, you made me an analytical person?

Recently I read through Leviticus and wow, there’s a whole lot I don’t understand in that book.  More like there’s a whole lot that I question, “why is this even in the Bible?”  Yes, I know it was a different culture.  Yes, I know it needs to be read in context and yes I know we read the OT through the lense of the New Testament.  But still I read sections and think, “That’s just not right.”  I don’t need to get into specifics.  I’m sure you’ve come across plenty of Bible bashers who joyfully go straight to certain passages of Leviticus to disprove God by making Him out to be some sort of immoral monster.  Which leads back to my original question of “why is this even in the Bible?”  Why did God allow things like this to be written knowing that it would cause many to speak out against Him in later cultures?

I became so distraught over this I put the Bible down for a while.  I was angry because I didn’t understand.  Many other issues bombarded at the same time.  I ran into a nasty cocktail of spiritual, mental, emotional and financial trouble.  I was in a lot of pain and I was angry.  But something crept up through my anger; something that pushed passed my understanding—or lack thereof.

It was peace.  His peace.

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;  and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. –Philippians 4:6-7

The interesting thing—and probably an obvious truth to many—is that when I was angry and was not talking to God I was a total wreck.  He allowed me to have my pout fest and then I finally gave in and made my requests known to God.   I gave in and asked for help because I certainly wasn’t going to figure it all out on my own.  And what do ya know?  Just like scripture says, as I started asking, peace started reigning.

So today I sit and rest in His peace.  I trust the Lord and take a hard lesson learned to lean not on my own understanding.  There’s many things I don’t understand in this world, but there’s one thing I do:

God is good.

 

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17 thoughts on “Beyond Understanding

  1. forestmtnhike

    Hi there, I just want to let you know that I enjoyed what you wrote. What has helped me, oh many times, as I read through the bible is to pray before I read it. A prayer so simple as: “Lord Jesus,. I pray Lord that you would unveil me as I read Your word. I pray that you would help me to understand what I can’t understand. May Your word be living and operative within me…”
    What helps also is to read it with someone else. I like scheduling bible reading times with some older sisters in my church. I feel that they have more experiences and understanding of the bible and so I like reading it with them. They’ve helped me to understand somethings I couldn’t understand, and they’re great shepherds also. Anyhow, may you be enriched and supplied every single time you turn the good Word!;)

    Grace&peace,
    Rose

    Reply
  2. MaryMaryWhy-U-Bugging

    This is a great post. I completely can relate about how sometime when reading the bible confusion can just take over. I have a strange perspective.. which I wont even go into detail about. But what I will say is that there are many bibles and versions. The relationship that I have with God is that if there were no proof or writings or, nothing to follow such as a bible on earth, I am still sure that my creator exist, because I am, and because you are. Let your spirit lead you to all truth. God is and no one source of anything could be enough to express the Lord’s vastness. I see the bible as a tool, an example on how to walk upright, etc. I pray God continues to guide you on this beautiful journey that you are on. God bless.

    Reply
  3. kappello

    I have also had moments of frustration in reading it and have had to ask for guidance of the Holy Spirit, but I also realize that a lot of laws after the Ten Commandments were laws made by men and legalism, which Christ did away with, and also that as hygiene and all improved these things were no longer necessary to adhere to. I also had to ask for wisdom to understand which were symbols and foreshadowings of the Messiah. The understanding of the bible is quite a journey and if one is analytical, one really needs a lot of Holy Spirit inspiration.

    Reply
  4. Cindy Powell

    Amen honey. God IS good. In the final analysis (no pun intended–ha, ha) who He is matters far more than what WE understand about the Bible or even about His ways. Nothing quite like the the joy of resting in His goodness–even when you don’t have a thing figured out. May His peace continue to guard both your heart and mind–always. Love you 🙂

    Reply
  5. nopew

    As someone trained in scholarship I find history and language lead to explain many “un-understandable” parts of Scripture, which is personally helpful. But for those who don’t have that I have one hint, not “why”, but “Who”. It was/is important to God for it to be there. More often the things we don’t understand challenge our own cultural or religious ideas and so we become resistant. What I mean is, always open our minds to the hard parts God wants for us, which make it even more unlikely we can do anything to please God, except let God in and do what we can’t. I am learning a devotional openness answers technical difficulties.
    Peace

    Reply
  6. vwoods1212

    Gosh golly, this is great….i have been at that place and I know the peace you speak of, the Word says the world cannot receive it. But oh that hope in Christ. Wonderful..

    Reply

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