The Desire to Know
“But the serpent said to the woman, ‘You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.’” Genesis 3:4-5 (emphasis mine)
We want to know what God knows, don’t we?
We want to know good and evil.
We want to know why. Why does this happen, why doesn’t that happen?
We want to know the outcome of our days, the number of our days. We want to know what the future holds. We want to understand the past. We want to know what we should do in the present. What decisions should we make? Should we go this way or that way?
We want to know.
We don’t want to trust.
In my own life right now this desire surrounds me on all sides. We all want to know what the results of Bryan’s next PET scan will show. We want to know if the cancer is getting worse or getting better. We want to know what the outcome will be and what steps and decisions are best for us to make now. We want clear knowledge, assurance, and direction about what the best treatments will be going forward. We want to know the future and the number of our days.
And with my daughter we want to know how she will develop. Will she walk? Will she talk? We want to know the exact steps we have to take to make sure that she does do those things.
We want to know good and evil - we want to know what path is best to take (what path is good) and what path is not (what path would be evil for us). We want to know where we should live, where we should work, how we should spend our days.
We want to know… because we want to control.
But, the truth is we cannot be like God. We are not God.
Even with the knowledge of good and evil, even with our eyes being opened as Adam and Eve’s were, we are still not God. The serpent lied.
And yet the desire to be God, the desire to know, to control, to determine our own destinies, is not lessened, it has only grown greater.
Knowing may be desired, but it is not in our best interest. It is not what God desires for us. I am not sure we could ever understand or know as God does - we are not God (although we often set ourselves up as little gods).
And so God hides himself. He veils the future. He speaks in parables. Not to frustrate, but to help. To lead us to trust.
It is not knowing that God wants from us, it is trusting. Trusting in Him. Following Him with faith like a little child’s.
Today, as every day, I find myself surrounded in unknowing, surrounded in waiting. And God asks, “Will you trust? Will you stay in the unknown, will you be content in the waiting, will you live in the now?”
Adam and Eve’s story becomes for me a parable for my own season of unknown. Will I, as my ancestors before me, usurp control and grasp at knowing? Or will I trust?
I hope I trust.
Rejoicing in the journey,