Saturday, May 21, 2011

The God Who May Be

I have begun to make my way through Richard Kearney’s “The God Who May Be”.  Kearney’s discourse takes place between a few rival ways that have historically been formative in shaping the cultural content that forms our knowledge of God.   He suggests that the capacity to respond to God comes first by recognizing our own powerlessness, vulnerability, fragility and brokenness.  It is in this paradoxical place that we find ourselves empowered to respond to God’s own primordial powerlessness and to make the potential Word flesh.  There is something in this that rings true – it draws us beyond the limited boundaries of propositional statements about God into the God of the possible – the God who may be.  This evokes a few things in me.  One, it solicits a movement into the unknown of life that actually requires a trust and faith.  This movement terrifies me.  Most of what has masqueraded in my life as faith and trust are really suburban and domesticated desires for security and assurances. Security that I will have enough and assurances that life will deposit me to the end of my days relatively unscathed, money in the account and a memory bank replete with joy, laughter and meaning.   And then the words of Etty Hillesum shortly before she was executed in a Nazi concentration camp, “You (God) cannot help us, but we must help you and defend Your dwelling place inside us to the last.”

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