We shall not cease from exploration and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time. - TS Eliot
But now that you have come to know God, or rather to be known by God, how can you turn back again to the weak and worthless elementary principles of the world? - Galatians 4:9 (ESV)
There is an apocryphal gospel ascribed to Thomas where Jesus says, “Cleave a piece of wood, and I am there. Lift up a stone, and you will find me there.” This is a God-bathed world. (Dallas Willard) And it begs exploration.
But to explore is to become vulnerable. Exploration is an opening. To explore the woods we risk getting lost. To explore romance we risk a broken heart. Space/Catastrophe. Faith/Heresy. Friendship/Betrayal. Truth/Error.
So why risk it? What exactly are we hoping to find at the bottom of everything?
Purpose? Meaning? Order? Ourselves? God?
St. Paul says something to the effect that without love words are noise; insight is shortsighted; wisdom is folly; power is phony; generosity is vanity. Love is the headspring, the breath, the battery. For Paul, at least, exploration is a means to finding Love: to knowing and being known. And I tend to think that 7,000 years of recorded human history agree with him.
No singer has sung anything truer than love.
No mystic has gleaned the astral plane for anything more profound than this: You Are You And That Is Enough.
No poet has spun a web stickier than these three words: You Are Loved.
No holy scripture has declared anything quite so succinct as this: God Is Love.
And the God the Bible describes is a God not only hiding under every rock, but actively pursuing you and me; an author writing himself into our stories; an explorer leaving home and privilege for the purpose of Love: a savior on a rescue mission.
So let me ask you: Have you experienced God’s Love? What else are you looking for? Are you yet to experience God’s Love? What are you willing to risk?