God of the Gaps

There are many things that we do not understand. It is the natural inclination of many of us to credit God for things that we cannot comprehend. We cannot understand why bad things happen because we cannot understand God’s perspective. We cannot understand the origins of creation because God’s creativity is so incredibly complex. We cannot fully grasp how God interacts with humanity because it is simply a spiritual mystery.

I am an advocate of embracing mystery. I believe that mystery must be a high value of spirituality. The problem occurs when we relegate our understanding of God to the gaps; when we only acknowledge God in things that we don’t understand. This perspective has had a devastating effect on Christianity in the 20th and 21st centuries.

Expecting to only see God in the gaps will eventually cause us to reject faith or reject learning.

Expanding our understanding shrinks the gaps, thus shrinking God. Therefore, within this perspective, the Christian who wants to preserve his or her faith must reject learning. Recent history has highlighted many conservative Christians who have decried science and education for this very reason.

This rejection of knowledge exists because Christians have watched so many experience a crisis of faith as their knowledge of the universe grew. When knowledge grows, mystery shrinks, and God begins to disappear.

Unless we have a bigger understanding of God.

I believe that human beings will continue to increase in understanding. Researchers are unlocking incredible secrets of human genetics, quantum mechanics, the far reaches of the universe, medicine, history, and the human mind that have never been dreamed of. If we do not develop a new way of understanding God, then He will continue to shrink.

I propose that we see God in the mysteries of the universe, but we also allow our understanding of God to grow as the universe in uncovered before us. Let’s be prepared to allow new understandings of creation to brings us new understanding of God. Let’s never think that what we know now is enough.

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