Jaelyn, my sixteen-year-old daughter, turned to me and exclaimed, “I understand the meaning of life, and I’m about to blow your mind!” Then we both laughed hysterically. If only I had come to understand the meaning of life by the age of sixteen. My life might be completely different.
Jaelyn shared her thoughts and then asked, “If God created us for relationship, why did He put the tree of knowledge of good and evil in the garden?” I told her someone had just asked her dad and me the same question the night before. I responded from my own understanding and from my take away from the previous night’s discussion.
I answered Jaelyn's question by asking another question. Since God is God and has no need for man why did God create man? Then I answered my own question by explaining God is love, and love requires relationship. God created man for relationship, and relationship requires choice. Without choice there is no relationship. Then I explained further that the Bible says Jesus was known before the foundation of the world. (See I Peter 1:20.) So God created us for relationship, gave us the choice to be in relationship or to not be in relationship with Him, and He provided a redemptive plan in the event man chose no relationship. She responded by saying, "Well, He's pretty much got us covered. We're fools not to get it." I agree.
The truth is I can't capture the meaning of life in a moment. I am finite and God is infinite. I am not the final answer; God is the final answer. God is not subject to my opinion, rather I am subject to God. There are others who have better understanding of the meaning of life than me who may answer differently than how I answered my daugher. I think most of us would agree, however, God is pretty incredible!
I ask a lot of questions, and in my quest for answers I realize my tendency to depend on the answer rather than God who gives the answer. To keep my focus where it should be I am committed to accepting that I may not always receive a specific answer to all of my questions. I simply choose to trust God regardless of what I don't understand.
Many of my thoughts are mere musings of an inquiring mind. However there is one thing I do know to be true. God is real. I know this because He has proven Himself to be the source of everything I have ever needed, to be right about any thing I have ever questioned, and to be in control of any circumstance I have ever faced. My experiences with God have taught me to trust His identity, to trust His character, and to trust His power.
There are many things we humans find to disagree on and discuss about God, but no opinion can take away one's personal experience. I may have a lot of questions, but what I have learned from my personal relationship with Him is really all I need to know. My learning through relationship is proving to be a life long journey. Though my understanding may seem to be simple, it really is most profound.