Monday, January 14, 2008

Struggling for a Latent God

If I want to take a leap of faith and place my hope in our latent God, first I have to find God. Even if I am able to wade through the mucky uncertainties that faith creates, even if I am willing to overcome the hurdles that doubt presents, I still have to find God somewhere. If God is latent, is there any way to find God? Or am I doomed to be disappointed, with lots of faith to give but nowhere to put it?

Are we forced to find this God we want to believe in? If God is not readily evident, how does God become real to us? The God who is hidden from the world must somehow become visible if we are going to believe in God. If God is latent, is it up to us to make God manifest? Must we must struggle against the odds to bring God into our reality?

Perhaps in some way faith is how we find God. Perhaps faith is what makes God visible. This act of finding/revealing makes us into dramatic incarnations of God in the world. Through faith God becomes evident to us by becoming visible through us. The act of believing brings God into our world in a real way. Without faith, God is intangible. God is nowhere to be touched or seen or heard or felt. A God who is known only through hypothesis and conjecture is a shadow of hope, nothing more. But when we come to know God through faith, God becomes real and actual to us. As God lives in and through our lives, we become incarnations of God in the world.

If God is latent, existing as potential in the world, we must struggle to bring that latent God into our reality. Without faith, God remains distant and intangible, but by the act of believing God enters into our lives. It is through our struggle of faith that God becomes incarnate in us--and that is how God comes into our world.

Read my first three posts on this subject: "Acknowledging a Latent God," "Confronting a Latent God," and "Wrestling with a Latent God."


  1. What if God has chosen to be latent that He might not force Himself on humanity, so that He would be loved and appreciated as He reveals Himself through whispers from eternity, rather than from seeming earthquakes within temporality, only as a human heart may be capable of receiving in the first place? What if God possesses the same kind of heart as that of a human being (yet much, much larger and deeper) which desires to be loved for Himself rather than feared because of a kind of Self-manifestation which a human heart may not be able to bear in its fragile, finite, and fallible nature?
    To sit here and contemplate thoughts of such magnitude seems to be one way that God could be communiating with me, yet it seems that the ways He might elect to do so would also be of multitundinous possibilities (I do conjecture).

    It seems that faith as trust, more a state of being that has developed over the span of one's lifetime to the present, rather than an intellectual act of assenting (though this may, indeed, be included), may be a more viable way of trying to understand this latent God, because the struggle we have within calls from somewhere, and so how did that 'struggle' find its way into concious existence?

    So, yes, perhaps God is to be found within our yearning to know Him, or just our desire 'to know,' amongst the other possible myriad ways He reveals Himself to humanity, according to each separate individual's constitution and need. Or, maybe it is supposed to be something much more simple, and relational, dependent on a trusting human heart which craves a personal word or 'touch' from the Author of it's small and seemingly insignificant frame.

    I think that I will continue to pursue the God beyond my ability to imagine, though I will imagine that God is like that of the person of Jesus Christ in the Bible, for I know of and have never heard of such a one as he. What God would be offended if I were to gather from the temporal realm the best example offered in history, available to me, of a person who was honored and cherished and sought after by so many, and imagine Him to be of such a caliber? When I die and have found that I had errored in my judgement here on earth about WHAT IS, I have to believe that I am known to my core by this God and that He will accept me despite my agnosticism, my confusion; that is, if there is a future of some kind, and a God of its making.

  2. Yes, perhaps.... I have a tendency to go the same direction when I think about how and why God is this way or that. Perhaps (no, hopefully) God has a greater plan and purpose than I can see, coming into our world in ways I would never imagine. I expect that I will get most things wrong about God, but that won't stop me from trying....

    So for now, I will continue to focus on issues of God and faith and Christian living from the isolated perspective of human experience--my own subjective theology from below.


Let me know what you think....