“No eye has seen, nor ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him – but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit.” (1 Cor. 2:9)
What I have discovered is that our faith can sometimes be more about unlearning than learning. The old wineskins of thinking and doing things we have always done now cannot contain the new fresh work of the Holy Spirit. To cling to past certitudes, attitudes, and strategies of relating to God is to neglect Jesus’ active, living, functioning presence and the new life He is inviting us into.
God is too big, and our souls are too deep to think we have arrived. God is at work in ways we have yet to experience or imagine. This means we must be willing to rethink, unlearn, and humbly admit that what we know and what we have experienced is not all there is. Part of our ongoing salvation is the journey that takes us away from a former place and toward a new place. This is the place where our souls expand.
This means we will have to put aside our agendas, assumptions, narrow understandings, our addiction to control, and confront all the ways we have been stuck in false patterns of thinking, being, and doing. To ignore these things will leave us with a pinched image of a life with God.
To ignore these things will leave us with a pinched image of a life with God.
So, with a new twist, I want to list a few things I have unlearned. Instead of listing what I now believe, I will list them as those things I no longer believe:
I no longer believe God’s goodness is dependent on mine.
I no longer believe that if I am not chaotically busy and exhausted, I am not doing enough.
I no longer believe Grace is not enough.
I no longer believe that being a good Christian is the same as being on a spiritual journey.
I no longer believe self-care is selfish.
I no longer believe that people are my “projects” to win for the kingdom.
I no longer believe that the spiritual life is achieved by my hard efforts.
I no longer believe setting time to be alone with God is wasted time or a luxury I can’t always afford.
I no longer believe that rest only comes when life is settled down and manageable.
I no longer believe that life will slip through my fingers if I don’t maintain control.
I no longer believe God is disappointed in me.
I no longer believe that trying harder is the answer.
I still have so much to unlearn. There in is the spiritual journey.
What could God be inviting you to unlearn?
What will you have to put aside in order to embrace this new understanding?