Who does not like to decipher a mystery, or solve a problem, and come to understand something? In addition to the sense of satisfaction that comes from using the intellect that God gave us, it also gives us a sense of security. When faced once again with the same situation, we will know what is going to happen and how best to proceed. but what happens when we are desperately seeking certainty?
“Obsessively seeking certainties can indicate that we have not taken the right path
We all seek a certain level of security and certainty. Without it life would be almost impossible. But obsessively seeking these certainties can indicate that we have not taken the right path, especially when dealing with God or others.
When we believe we have God or our neighbour completely deciphered, we enter the labyrinth of certainty. It is a labyrinth shaped by our own preconceived ideas and expectations. Absolutely everything in this labyrinth is measured according to what we have set for ourselves.
In this solitary place, rather than true images of people and God, we produce our caricatures that deny their rich reality and complexity. Perhaps it is the result of experiencing a hostile world in which the only way to survive is to have information and control over situations and people.
“Sometimes we need to leave certainty and let ourselves be surprised
Of course it is possible to know God and know our neighbour to some degree. But it is also necessary to recognise our limits with respect to our knowledge and understanding. It would be enough to remember how many times we held a mistaken idea of someone or of God himself.
That is why sometimes we have to leave behind certainty, and let ourselves be surprised by God and by others.
“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? (Mt 6, 25-27)
Based on the original Spanish text written by: Ulises Covarrubias, sj
Translated by: Fr Jimmy Bonnici