The Variables and The Constant by JW Kaiser
Our interpretation of reality drives us and defines how we think, feel and act. If you are in a bad mood while surfing, no matter how good the waves are, there is a good chance your session will be dictated by your attitude. Likewise, if you are in a great mood and really stoked, the waves can be not so great and you can have the session of the year! The reason is that both the waves and our mindsets are variables in the equations of everyday life. The same principle can be applied to your job, your school, your relationships, your financial situation… all these things are variables that change and are open to our interpretations. Therefore our reality is driven by variables that toss us around like a ship on high seas.
However, faith is different. There are two sides to the equation. Our side is again the variable. The same attitudes that we can carry into our surfing, job, school, etc., are at play with our faith. Sometimes we can just not “feel” like we are growing in our faith. Our ability to trust is limited to how we respond to our emotions and so many other variables that influence our side of the faith equation daily.
If we are the variable in the equation of faith and life, then God is the constant. We first hear God refer to himself as “I am” to Moses in the Exodus story. When Moses realized his inadequacies, God again reminded Moses, “I am that I am”, meaning roughly, “I’ve got you! I’m in control. I’m the constant.” Later, in the incarnation of God on Earth, Jesus continues the theme. Seven times he gives us “I am…” statements.
“I am the bread of Life…” – John 6:35
“I am the light of the world…” – John 8:12
“I am the door…” – John 10:9
“I am the true vine…” – John 15:1
“I am the good shepherd” – John 10:11
“I am the resurrection and the life…” – John 11:25
“I am the way, the truth, and the life…” – John 14:6
In light of our analogy, I think it is safe to suggest that Jesus could also say, “I am the constant”. It is HIS reality that we, most of the time, struggle to understand, which exactly why we have to fix our eyes on Jesus, who is the constant in our lives!