Being "right" versus knowing Love
“Desire without knowledge is not good…” Proverbs 19v2a
Knowledge, like anything else, is participatory. It exists within relationship. We can observe this through a simple example such as how to use a hammer. We know, because we have heard, that a hammer is used (primarily) by our hand to pound a nail into wood. This awareness is what invites us into the participation between our hand, the hammer, the nail, and the wood. And so, the participation then is the introduction or invitation into knowledge, into an active engagement between two or more somethings.
But desire without knowledge is not good…
Desire to jump out of a plane without the knowledge of how to use a parachute is not good. Desire to make coffee without the knowledge of the proper amounts and process is not good. And in the same way, it’s possible that the desire to be a Christian in the West without knowledge of Love can be not good (the seeking of a feel good system based on our actions.)
Desire is either allowed to lead (and issues will arise), or desire is tamed and knowledge is allowed to lead. Think invisible urge versus tangible experience…
Information and knowledge are two different things yet often cunningly disguised as the same thing. Information is lifeless – there is no participation within it. It’s the building materials to create the house, but not the home itself. It’s the black and white instruction booklet, but not the actual assembly process. Knowledge on the other hand is the activation of (true or false) information between us and it that takes place as we receive and agree. Knowledge is most like the Spirit of God, the movement happening between us, God, and each other.
How many Christians in the West think they know all the answers yet are stuck in a place of desire and information? How many people zealously think they’re “right” yet are missing knowledge… or participation with Love all together? I’d suggest many. And I’d sadly say this is the place (and definition of Christianity) we fall into by default when God is seen simply as “the right way” rather than The Light, Love, and Peace of all things. Allowing God to primarily be this for us and every other person regardless of orientation, religion, or social standing is uncomfortable for some because we’ve grown up learning information (in this case, the “right” things), but rarely are invited into knowledge. We place the former before the latter and miss the latter altogether. We can express our frustration and miss the celebration.
This in no way is intended to undermine sin, rather it’s a re-shifting of the role of judge from us to Him so that we can again be free to participate in Love. I believe the lifelong process (specifically for us as an intellectually society) of repenting from thinking that desire and information is the way to God is a great daily start to agreeing with Love. Remembering that God first came to us, not us to God is the basis for a free life.
So today, may you know that your greatest challenge is not learning facts from the Bible, memorizing Scripture, or studying how to “defend the faith” (which can all be good things), but instead is finding the rhythm and cadence of being able to see all of life as one. That the trees around you, and the person next to you, and your current emotional state are all part of the colorful collage of life with God. That everything you learn about God is intended to lead you into interacting with God. To let our desire and our overflowing shelves of knowledge come second to seeking active participation with God in all moments.
Rhythm of Practicing Peace
Read 1 John 4v9-13 slowly and out loud.
“This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us. This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: He has given us of his Spirit.”
Picture what John is saying. That the Source of Life made Itself know in Jesus. That Jesus and the Father are one – a reminder that God is perfect unity, love, and active participation (the Spirit of God.) And that you are invited into that place… in-fact, if you want to be, that is where you are. And it’s here where you can move from information about God into knowledge with God, or participation with God (which is often experienced as we choose to love each-other. This is why all of life and God is one… it’s all the same thing.) To love our neighbor is to love God.
So this is your life’s greatest goal – even now, to remain aware of Love. Of your place in Love. Only then does desire and information become second to knowledge and active participation.
Prayer: Father, Jesus, Holy Spirit… thank you for inviting me to be close to You, to rest in the center of Your eternal conversation of Love. Teach me to see You today. Wake me up to the countless ways You’re speaking all around me. And when I come to that place today where I desperately want to disagree with You, remind me of Love.
I give You my today… here I am, Your daughter/son is listening.