I am working on a post about our current national pain

over race and violence and injustice.

But until I get that done,

I wanted to share a bit from a book I am reading 

called The Preaching Life, by Barbara Brown Taylor.

In it she talks about the disillusionment that can come

from pain and disappointment in life,

and pain and disappointment in God.

She turns these things on their head

and shows how losing our illusions (which is really what dis-illusionment is)

about who God is

can actually be a source of growth toward truth.

She writes:

"... the fear of the unknown takes on an element of wonder

as the disillusioned turn away from the God who was supposed to be 

in order to seek the God who is.

Every letdown becomes a lesson and a lure.

Did God fail to come when I called?

Then perhaps God is not a minion. 

So who is God?

Did God fail to punish my adversary?

Then perhaps God is not a policeman.

So who is God?

Did God fail to make everything turn out all right?

Then perhaps God is not a fixer.

So who is God?

Over and over, 

my disappointments draw me deeper into the mystery of God's being and doing.

Every time God declines to meet my expectations, another of my idols is exposed.

Another curtain is drawn back so that I can see what I have propped up in God's place -

no, that is not God

so who is God?

It is the question of a lifetime, 

and the answers are never big enough 

or finished.

Pushing past curtain after curtain,

it becomes clear that the failure is not God's

but my own,

for having such a poor and stingy imagination.

God is greater than my imagination,

wiser than my wisdom,

more dazzling than the universe,

as present as the air I breathe,

and utterly beyond my control."

God is a mystery, my friends

and every day,

every experience,

even the hard ones,

offer us an opportunity to let go of the god we make up

in order to embrace the God who is


and wider

and deeper

and better

than all we could ever imagine.