Certain uncertainty

At various times in my life, I have thought it would be nice to live in a black-and-white world…where there is only one right answer to any particular question…where there are no doubts about belief…where you can go to a book and get a specific answer as to how you should behave. Sometimes it seems as though that would be so very comfortable…and so comforting.

But I also think it would be stifling.

The reality is that the world we live in is full of options–which means it is also full of questions. It’s always growing…always changing. And that requires me to do the same.

Yes, I could live in absolute certainty. I could make decisions based on what I knew at one specific point in my life and say that those decisions are good for all times. But that would be like looking at my 2-year-old granddaughter and expecting her to be making the same decisions when she is 21 as she does now.  I would be sad if she had not learned more during those 19 years! Her understanding of what life involves should have changed…and so should her relationships with others…and her abilities.

I’ve come to understand for myself the truth of the saying that the only constant is change.

If it weren’t so, we would still be fearful of so many diseases that we have learned the causes of and how to treat. We would not understand the inter-relatedness of decisions we make with the environment. We would not have the ability to connect with family and friends around the world. And on and on…


I am content to live in certain uncertainty…to be willing to struggle with difficult questions…to recognize that any particular set of laws was written for a specific time and set of situations–and to look for the ways in which they can be appropriately applied in my own time and set of situations.

And I am content to live in the certainty that the only way to deal with the uncertainty of life is to do the best I can to live on what the One I follow said were the two greatest commandments: (1) to love God with all my being, and (2) to love my neighbor just as much as I love myself.