The problem is we just don’t understand God.
For as long as there has been human thought people have been trying to understand God.
As human thought has developed and evolved over the millennia, we have continued to struggle with the concept and idea of God. If we look to the Native Americans and their faith traditions, back to the beginning of modern thought, we will see that through cave drawings and tribal traditions, humans have wanted to understand the power of the divine, where it (he) came from, and what happens when we die.
In our culture today, we have morphed God into something that we can wrap our heads around. We have created God in our own image so that we can understand “him.”
The view of God in The Shack blows that to pieces. One of the concepts in The Shack is that God is revealed in the Trinity – Papa, a black woman, Jesus, a Middle Eastern man, and Sarayu, a woman who is the Holy Spirit.
However, as P. Young fleshes this out throughout the novel, it gives us a better understanding of the power and nature of The Trinity and the nature of God.
Sometimes I think we must come to the realization that no matter how hard we try, our idea and understanding of God is just not adequate. Instead of fitting God in our box, it would be powerful if we would construct our “God box” and then multiply it to infinity and then come to the conclusion that it is BEYOND our realm of understanding because THAT would be how good God is.
From The Shack . . .
“The problem is that many folks try to grasp some sense of who I am by taking the best version of themselves, projecting that to the nth degree, factoring in all the goodness they can perceive, which often isn’t much, and then calling that God. And while it may seem like a noble effort, the truth is that it falls pitifully short of who I really am. I am not merely the best version of you that you can think of. I am far more than that, above and beyond all that you can ask or think” (p. 100).
God is far more than the best version of ourselves. God is God. And God is love! Therefore, when we are faced with extreme adversity, let us remember – God is always there, ready for us to bring all our “stuff” and release it to God, but as far as understanding God – it is impossible to wrap human words around the divine.
1 John 4:8-10
[ God Is Love ] My beloved friends, let us continue to love each other since lovecomes from God. Everyone who loves is born of God and experiences a relationship with God. The person who refuses to love doesn’t know the first thing about God, because God is love-so you can’t know him if you don’t love. This is how God showed his love for us: God sent his only Son into the world so we might live through him. This is the kind of love we are talking about-not that we once upon a time loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to clear away our sins and the damage they’ve done to our relationship with God.