Monday, April 30, 2007

"God" is not short for "Google"

Fully half of the kids had their hands up. Some were waving them wildly, hoping to get my attention so that I would call on them. I was teaching a 5th grade math class this afternoon. I was very glad to see those hands go up when I asked for the answer to "number three" because, well, I don't do math. Oh, I had the answer. It was written in red in my teachers book. But I had no idea how to GET the answer. And I had a plethora of students anxious to explain to the others why the answer WAS the answer.

You see, there is a difference between HAVING the answer and knowing how to GET the answer. Sometimes you have the answer but you don't know how you got it. Other times you know how (or where) to get the answer but you don't know what the answer is.

Case in point.

I was driving home from the mall tonight. Actually I was in the front passanger seat. Debbie was driving because we left home before sundown and I had taken my prescription sun glasses with me and had forgotten my regular glasses. I don't drive without being able to see. It just seems like a good policy to me. So tonight I was the passanger.

The top was down on the car. It was a beautiful evening. The sky was clear. The temps were warm. I reclined in my seat because Debbie was on the phone with her mother and I was not engaged in a conversation. I just looked up at the sky. Somewhere up there ... is God's house. I don't know where. But it's there.

I've been wanting to ask God some questions lately. Some personal things that I do not understand have begun to bother me. it is not important to this story for you to understand what those questions are. All that matters is that I have questions and He has answers and I am wondering if He would share them with me.

That is when I remembered today's math class. Sometimes hands would go up when a student wanted to give the answer to a problem. Occasionally a hand would go up when a student had a question that he needed an answer to. I always call on the students with the questions. That is my job. Answer their questions and, in so doing, teach them.


I raised my hand. I felt the wind press against my cupped palm but I held it there as I stared off into the distant heavens. I whispered, "Excuse me, Sir. I have some questions and I was wondering if you would mind if I asked them." Silence. "And would you be willing to answer my questions?" Silence.

That is when the bug smashed into the palm of my hand and died there. It hurt and I jerked my hand down. I brushed the bug off and glanced back toward the sky. I kept my hand in my lap.

"Ok. Maybe later. Thanks anyway."

God speaks when He wants to speak. God says what He wants to say. He is not a cosmic form of "Google" where you punch in your question and the answer comes racing to your screen. He is God. Oh yes, He certainly does love me. He loves you too. But life is lived on His terms. Never on our own.

Yes, I rather wish He had been willing to answer my questions tonight. But it could have been much worse.

Just ask the bug.