mystery.

Some of you may know {from my occasional tweets} that this summer I have been taking a New Testament Greek class. {and for those of you who didn’t know…well now you do!}  Basically the class is comprised of learning as much Greek as possible in 5 four hour classes. {can you say c.r.a.z.y??}  Now I am one of those weird girls that absolutely LOVES learning about the Bible, and has literally been waiting since my freshman year of undergrad to take Biblical language classes, {yes…I am THAT nerdy!} so this Greek class has been a challenge that I have thoroughly loved!

If you have taken any sort of language in your lifetime, you know that there are many aspects to learning a new language. {parts of speech, conjugating verbs, verb tenses, pronunciation….oh and for Greek: a whole. new. alphabet!}  On top of that craziness, Greek is extremely complicated. There are about 1 million rules involved {okay I’m exaggerating…but you get the point!} and for every rule there are about 1 million more exceptions to that rule!!  So attempting to learn all of that in five weeks is basically like trying to eat an elephant in one sitting.

For the majority of class we practice reading and translating sentences.  As each student attempts to not only pronounce the Greek sentence right, but then tediously try to figure out what that sentence means, while also remembering the 1 million rules and their exceptions, to finally come to the magical conclusion of what the english translation is… all I can say is pressure!

Sometimes in the middle of that Greek sentence {and by middle I mean the second word in a five word sentence} I literally have no idea what I’m even saying.  There are moments when I have absolutely no clue what those crazy Greeks were thinking when they wrote that language, and how in the world I could even translate that sentence with their ridiculous grammar.  On that second word I feel overwhelmed, confused, frustrated and just ready for the professor to chime in and give me the answer to it all.

But as I’ve been learning; I love when the professor doesn’t chime in.  I love when he lets me figure it out, piece by piece.  So naturally then, does the unveiling process take a long time? Sure does!  Do I have to literally work on one single letter at a time?  Absolutely! But as that often 20 minute process unfolds, and as I patiently work through the chaos called Greek; I see how the sentence is shaping, and THEN… I get it! When I have translated that sentence there is this huge epiphany {once more exaggerating, but if only you knew the feeling of that accomplishment!} and there is this wonderful moment of clarity and joy that I kept at it, and I finally see the result of my persistence.

I was thinking about this crazy translation process Tuesday night during class.  As I thought about this strenuous process, I could only compare it to a beautiful picture of God’s will in our lives. {I know I’m getting all metaphorical on you …but lemme explain…}

There are sincere moments in my life when I wish that God was less of a mystery.  I wish I could know exactly what he wanted me to do with my life.  I wish I could know what he has planned for me, or what decisions he wants me to make today.  I wish sometimes that he would chime in with his booming voice and show me what his plans are and point me in the direction of his will.

As I’ve been struggling lately with my next step in life {what job do I get? what is my education going to be used for? where do you want me to be God?}, I have found myself wanting God to just chime in and give me the answers to all my questions.  I don’t want him to be mysterious now, I just want my answer!

But then I think about Greek.  I think about how life is like that simple {yet oh so complicated} sentence.  God is patiently allowing us to figure out piece by piece what life has for us; what He has for us.  Life isn’t about just landing at the finale, but about the process of getting to that finale. When you think about it, it’s that tedious, strenuous, often stressful process that makes the finale that much more sweet!  When I spend 20 minutes on that Greek sentence, mulling over each word and piecing it together letter by letter, that moment of accomplishment is so worth those 20 frustrating, confusing and often painful, minutes.  God doesn’t want to strip us of that momentous finale in our lives!  He will reveal his plans to us; piece by piece; moment by moment; lesson by lesson.  That unveiling process takes a little while in our lives.  But just because that process takes longer than we expect, doesn’t mean that God isn’t working toward that reveal.  

So my encouragement today is for both you and myself {to be quite honest!}.  I have realized that don’t really want God to be less mysterious, what I really want is to be more patient with myself.  I really want to be content with the part of life that I’m at right now {whether that includes knowing the answer to my prayers or not}.  I really want to have faith simply in the fact that I know God is in the middle of my translation process and he will chime in when he thinks the timing is best. I really want to simply enjoy the unfolding process that we call life. 

So instead of being frustrated, confused and stressed during this waiting process, I will be filled with faith that God is working on my incredible reveal.  I will believe that he is allowing my picture to come into focus one piece at a time, one moment at a time, one lesson at a time.  I will choose his timing over mine, his unveiling process over mine and his answers over mine. And now I must trust him in all of his mystery.   

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One thought on “mystery.

  1. Pingback: an immense practical advantage: clarity in the midst of confusion « power of language blog: partnering with reality by JR Fibonacci

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