doubt

“In these times I don’t, in a manner of speaking, know what I want;
perhaps I don’t want what I know and want what I don’t know.”

― Marsilio Ficino


(a small creek in the middle of nowhere LaGrange, Ga / Julie Cook / 2013)

The other evening I heard a really interesting observation…
with wording basically to the following effect….

“the demise of a nation begins when that nation begins to doubt itself”…

If you were ever a kid, let alone an adult for that matter,
out in the woods enjoying a hike, and you came across an old tree that had
fallen across a stream…
a stream that you were somehow going to have to get across…
chances are you had no other choice but to balance your way across the stream on
this fallen tree.

And yet chances are that if you stopped long enough, at the base of this fallen
tree, just as you were about to wobbly balance your way across,
you probably found yourself backing down as you were now full of trepidation
verses the moment’s prior determination of crossing.

Questions of safety, feasibility, accuracy, confidence now playing a dangerous
internal game of ‘can you or can’t you…’

Is the tree study?
Is there anything to hold on to?
How will I carry my stuff across with me?
Can I ‘one foot over one foot’ edge myself to the other side without falling off?
Is it too dangerous if I do fall?
What if I get dizzy?
Can I really balance all that well?

Finally…this self on self, back and forth conversation comes down to the
single conclusion….
‘I simply can’t do this’….

However, on the other hand….
there’s a better chance that if you had not hesitated, and were most confidant now doing
what other’s had done before you, each with safe success…
powering your way on and over without looking down and considering the worst—
you went about your merry way without another thought while
happily on the other side.

But if you did stop, pondering and weighing your options,
you most likely had to find another crossing or simply returned from
whence you came.

Doubt has a powerful way of stoping us dead in our tracks and often getting us into
more trouble than when we fist happened upon the very situation we’re
currently now finding ourselves doubting.

So as we now observe the dangerous path most in our Nation seem to prefer that we
as this Nation journey…
one of doubt, second guessing, self denouncing, self loathing, and misguided action…

I wonder…
have we simply stopped at the fallen tree, afraid now to cross the steam,
more than hesitant and almost apologetic about going forward along our merry way…

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.
Be not wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord, and turn away from evil.
It will be healing to your flesh and refreshment to your bones.

Proverbs 3:5-8

The absurdity of uncertainty found in the Omniscience

…I can inform thee of nothing…”
excerpt from a prayer by A. W. Tozer

DSCN0379
(a stream flows though Gleanlough National Park, County Wicklow, Ireland / Julie Cook / 2015)

Did you read that?

I can inform Thee of nothing…”

As in absolutely zero…the absence of anything and everything…

As in….
What can be said that is not previously known?
What single thought can be pondered that has not been previously revealed?
What emotion can be felt that has not already been felt?
What “oh by the way, I meant to tell you _____”
with the blank having long been filled in eons before one even learned to speak…?

No “by the ways”
No “I meant to say”
No slipped out “my bad”….
has ever passed without a prior knowing long before it was ever first thought or uttered…

Wrapping thoughts and minds around everything ever done and all things ever said, thought or felt…
knowing that all that was and is and will be…has already been seen and is known now and always by one and only One…

No secrets
Nothing hidden
Nothing private

For the One who has always been.. is that close…to you

You have searched me, Lord,
and you know me.
You know when I sit and when I rise;
you perceive my thoughts from afar.
You discern my going out and my lying down;
you are familiar with all my ways.
Before a word is on my tongue
you, Lord, know it completely.
You hem me in behind and before,
and you lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
too lofty for me to attain.

Psalm 139:1-6

What lies beneath

The proud depend upon the world to tell them whether they have value or not. Their self-esteem is determined by where they are judged to be on the ladders of worldly success. They feel worthwhile as individuals if the numbers beneath them in achievement, talent, beauty, or intellect are large enough.
Ezra Taft Benson

Be like the bird who, pausing in her flight awhile on boughs too slight, feels them give way beneath her, and yet sings, knowing she hath wings.
Victor Hugo

DSCN0112
(a blending melange of colors in an Alaskan stream as the salmon move up stream / Gregory Cook / 2015)

What lies beneath, underneath, below. . .
supporting you,
lifting you,
holding you. . . ?

Is it firm and sound
or
shifting and sinking?

Any builder or architect worth their salts knows that before building, be it home or skyscraper, a solid foundation must first be set, poured or laid—
Pylons are driven down to bedrock and footings are poured for anchoring. . .
everything that goes up, must first be sound underneath.

Life rocks along. . .everything is as it should be, relatively perfect.
Happy,
flowing,
carefree. . .

We ride the waves of mediocracy hoping always to rise upward, never ever downward,
chasing the proverbial dream. . .
Then one day, out of the blue, catastrophe strikes. . .
Our world is rocked to its core.

We either fold or we hold on. . .
Survival determined by. . .
what lies beneath. . .

Therefore thus says the Lord GOD, “Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a tested stone, A costly cornerstone for the foundation, firmly placed. He who believes in it will not be disturbed.
Isaiah 28:16