by Rob Krabbe
Sometimes I make things so very complicated.
I want to make sense out of God. I want to understand. I want to grasp Him. Get Him. Study theology and have it make perfect sense. Understand the way it all works. But then, I open my eyes one moment, and see the simplest smallest thing God has created. The simplest and smallest evidence of love from a God that owes us nothing, and that we owe everything. Its usually those moments, and they happen a lot, that I remember once again, that for now, and although knowledge is good, it's just better that I no longer care to understand everything. For me, knowing myself the way I do, and believe me, I know things about myself that give me at least a fair perspective; I know that I just really need to simplify a bit. Strip it down. Boil it down. Distill my life a little. Clarify. Accept more on faith, and understanding everything? Well not as much a priority for now. What is it, "Lean not on [my] own understanding?"
In the spirit of simplicity. Striking out on more faith and less on my own understanding. I looked up one of my favorite stories in the scriptures for inspiration in looking at our lives as worship for a blog post today.
22 The crowd joined in the attack against Paul and Silas, and the magistrates ordered them to be stripped and beaten with rods. 23 After they had been severely flogged, they were thrown into prison, and the jailer was commanded to guard them carefully. 24When he received these orders, he put them in the inner cell and fastened their feet in the stocks.
25 About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. 26 Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose. 27 The jailer woke up, and when he saw the prison doors open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself because he thought the prisoners had escaped. 28But Paul shouted, “Don’t harm yourself! We are all here!”
29 The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas. 30He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”
31 They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.” 32 Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house. 33 At that hour of the night the jailer took them and washed their wounds; then immediately he and all his household were baptized. 34 The jailer brought them into his house and set a meal before them; he was filled with joy because he had come to believe in God—he and his whole household.
Back to the simplicity thing . . . I'm sure I would have some wise comment, or sage advice, given the way that scripture makes me feel, but I find now, that at this time in my life, when I strip things down, the scripture needs less and less thinking, and more astonishment on my part. What a great story of faith, and grace, and what a great story of a life of worship. No judgement. No "I'm telling you that if you don't believe you'll . . . " just simple worship, hymn singing, from the heart, changing the lives of those who see it's authenticity.
So, enough said. I'm going to go read the story again, maybe in a couple of translations, and just soak it in.
Sometimes the simple things are more wonderful than I ever imagined, I just need to stop, look and listen, and maybe that's a good start for good worship.