Monday, August 22, 2016

Wheat Ridge: Cats That Search for Narnia

 Cats That Search for Narnia

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. James 1:5-6, ESV
The two cats that allow us to live with them are designated as indoor cats. This is not their choice, but is their best chance at longevity. A while back, my husband accidentally provided the cats with unexpected freedom. He released them into the garage from the house forgetting that the garage door was open. Quickly realizing his mistake, he rushed outside to find them sitting in the driveway seemingly stunned at their good fortune. The chase that ensued will be mercifully left to your imagination.
For quite a while after this, the cats would eagerly chase me down the stairs and beg to be let into the garage. They would clamor into the garage as if they were searching for the door in the wardrobe that led to their personal magical Narnia. Once they realized the door was not to be found, they would slink back into the house in feline despair.
As sinners trying to survive in a sinful world, we are constantly on the search for a magic fix to our lives. We look for the next diet, the next investment, the next political candidate, the next relationship that has the potential to fix old problems or bring joy to old lives. In that search, we hold tight to our doubts and are driven and tossed by the wind. Instead of searching the garage or the old dusty wardrobe, we search social media. We search in vain.
God has blessed us with many ways to make improvement in our lives. I certainly do not want to discourage anyone from making needed health-related changes. Yet, we need a way to search that does not randomly toss us from idea to idea. We need wisdom, and wisdom is found only in God.
Proverbs has a few things to say about wisdom. We are encouraged to be attentive to wisdom (2:2), that wisdom is a comfort (2:10), a blessing (3:13), and the path of righteousness (4:11). For those of us in a constant search for wisdom, the following verse sets us on the right course:
For the Lord gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding; He stores up sound wisdom for the upright; He is a shield to those who walk in integrity. (Proverbs 2:5-7)
Wisdom is not found in the world. The wisdom we seek is not found in our abilities, in our striving, or in our desire to be wise. Wisdom is found in God and in God alone.
The verses from James remind us that not only do we find wisdom in God but that wisdom is centered in God. In this way, it is practical in our lives. God’s wisdom, found in our God-given faith, is integrated into every part of our life and learning. If we rely on ourselves to find wisdom, it will only elude us.
Wisdom is a part of faith development and faith development happens in the Word and Sacraments. God blesses our seeking, our surrender, and our immersion in the Word. He provides both the motivation to seek wisdom and the wisdom itself. We are blessed, indeed.