as words lose their power when they are not born
out of silence, so openness loses its meaning when
there is no ability to be closed."
Not So Close!
quest for intimacy in relationships is often
linked to complete transparency. We falsely assume
that if we know each other completely, in every
detail, we'll be close. However, the old adage
that familiarity breeds contempt may prove more
accurate and biblical than it first
a false form of honesty suggests that nothing
should remain hidden and everything should be
said, expressed, and communicated between two
people. Ironically, however, this kind of total
unreservedness produces not intimacy but emptiness
Relationships thrive on mystery. Something
new and unexpected piques our interest,
attentiveness, and desire. Perhaps many marriages
hit the doldrums precisely because the mystery and
creativity dissipates. Knowledge may be nice, but
non-knowledge proves more alluring. In fact, our
insistence on complete
vulnerability may have more to do with control
than intimacy. We can control what we
not advocating secrecy surrounding sin or a blunt
refusal to connect with people. But somewhere
between complete exposure and utter
non-communication lies a creative and
Himself, who desires union with us, remains
delightfully unknowable and definitely
uncontrollable. We can trust His love and grace.
We don't fear that He is hypocritical - claiming
to be one thing, but secretly being another.
Nevertheless, He remains intriguingly and
wonderfully mysterious. The joy of our walk with
Him lies in the unexpected:
something He does without announcement; His
presence surprising us when we least expect
flourishes with every new and surprising discovery
of each other.
We join accountability groups where we
covenant to tell all and be utterly candid. Or we
may desire a friendship to be characterized by
total transparency. But our deepest purpose is
thwarted by our false assumptions. We desire
intimacy but end up with mere familiarity because
we fail to value the charming (and intended)
mystery of the unknown.
of us who are married can recall the excitement
and unquenchable thirst we had for our spouse
we married. We wanted as much time as possible
with this new person precisely because of the
mystery associated with them. But as mystery and
creativity fades so does intimacy.
same principle bears true in our spiritual
journey. The richness of our walk with Christ does
not depend on "figuring Him out" or having Him
describe and explain everything He thinks, feels,
or does. We will find depth and intimacy in the
process of discovery. What's He up to
HOPE that we will rediscover the joy of mystery in
each other and in Him.