It is the glory of God to conceal a matter,
And the glory of a king to plumb a matter.
Part of what makes God God-like is the mystery that surrounds Him and many of His works. He is invisible, the mechanisms of His actions are complex, His relationship to time is maddeningly different from ours, His Being is far, far beyond our telling. We can poke and prod, philosophize, apologize till the cows come home but we won’t get God. That is forever true, to the thousand thousands of ages.
Don’t think God is disappointed. Don’t think that mystery is a kind of unforeseen limitation of God: that He created us only to discover the awkwardness of this necessarily uneven relationship. Don’t think that God is longing for a peer, for a soul-mate, for a full disclosure of Himself to His creation. Don’t turn the mystery into a climate of mawkishness.
Don’t think of God as frustrated. You would be wrong to imagine that God’s transcendence is a barrier to communication, to accept the depressing idea that God’s loftiness and our puniness entails His speaking past us. Not so. Part of God’s greatness is His greatness to communicate—to pick just the right metaphor or blunt assertion or story or turn of phrase or tight argument in order to get His message out of Heaven and into earth. What I’m saying is this: don’t love the mystery for its own sake.
Likewise, don’t think of God as sneering or mean. This mysteriousness is a fact, but is not a barrier to intimidate, to stultify, to make the blood run cold. You accept the mysteriousness, you won’t let it imply any imperfections in God—good. Where you go wrong, though, is an absence of cheerfulness!
God’s concealment of things is the condition in which we live. That’s all. Hide and Seek : one way of describing God’s history with man.
Small people rail against this condition that demands spade-work and calluses. They get tired of plumbing and they pout. Or, perhaps more commonly, they puff up, get lofty. They use the condition of mysteriousness in grand slogans. They accept the concealment as a noble fact, but not as a working environment.
But great men – and this is their greatness - learn (what they cannot intuit) and ask (for what they don’t have) and knock (on closed doors) and seek (what is not theirs).
And, the Hidden God’s Son says, they find.