Have you ever had something you wanted to say, but your words got in the way?
I’ve been mulling something over, and I’m going to try to put into words… what I really want to say...because I need this. When times are tough and I don’t understand, I need this. When a friend lets me down or I suffer loss, I need this. When I am tempted, I need this. It’s what I want to show my loved ones more than anything, outside of love itself.
Theology, quite simply, is the study of God. And whether we realize it or not, each of us is a theologian, storing away ideas about God, be they correct or incorrect. Some are informed about God by nature and some by books or music. Some are influenced by relationships, and some by Scripture. We hide away theology bit by bit, until we’ve formed our view of life.
My theology, mature or not, will eventually surface, as difficult times flush out what I really believe about God. How is He involved in my life? My answer will either give me strength, or I’ll turn away. I’ll influence others in like manner. Ultimately, who or what I listen to will determine every reaction and decision. If I’m angry with God, I’ll be angry with others. If I think God is weak, I’ll give in to temptation. If I see God as uncaring, I won’t take care in the way I react to others. But if I believe God is in control, I will show hope in the midst of fear, pain, and disappointment. If I believe God is loving and forgiving, I’ll have reason to love and to forgive. If I know God well, I will be prepared to minister God’s grace in time of need. If I am weak in my own theology, I’ll have little to offer. You see, It’s Him, not me, that gives me the strength to stand and to serve. Without Him, I am nothing.
“Champions are made in the offseason.” That’s good theology. If I prepare myself by learning to know God, I’ll be ready in times of trial, I’ll have an answer for the critic, and I’ll have peace amid the storms.
Again, if theology is the study of God, then the the time I spend with Him in the offseason develops the theology I need when the heat is on.
God has led me through a significant time of growth in the last number of years as I’ve let go of my own agenda and spent increased time with Him. I’ve studied Him and practiced trusting Him when I couldn’t see. He’s shown me how to believe, even when what He said didn’t make sense…and now, what I really want to say… is hard to articulate. So I’ll to borrow some words from a favorite artist:
“What I really want to say is what the sun would say to the sky… for giving it a place to come alive. But my words get in the way of what I really want to say.” -Steven Curtis Chapman
Studying God is not a dry, intellectual task. It’s more like walking into who I am. His. Called. Appointed. Forgiven. Privileged. Loved. Changed. All the significance we long for as humans? It’s found in Him, the God of our hope.What I really want to say is that knowing Him gives me meaning. Knowing Him gives me hope. Knowing Him is what I was created for. And nothing else compares. Those are the best words I can think of … to say.
I say I’m always thinking about you
There’s no way I’d want to face this life without you
And even though these words come from deep inside me
There’s so much more I don’t have the words to say
‘Cause what I really want to say
Is what the sun would say to the sky
For giving it a place to come alive
But my words get in the way
Of what I really want to say
I will spend my whole life looking for a way somehow
To let you know just how precious you are to me
I’ll use the best words I know but I still won’t say it all
It’s like a tale too great to be told
It’s something that my heart can only show
I’m gonna take my whole life
Just to let you know
What I really want to say