I’ve used these phrases so often, I might as well claim that they are original with me and quote myself!
“The best things and the worst things are sometimes the same things”
“Often times, we get best and worst backwards”
“The best things in life and the worst things in life are often only known in the rear-view mirror”
I don’t know how many times some situation or event seemed to be great, but years later I saw that it wasn’t. Or how many times some terrible event was the springboard for something amazing. Sometimes I think of Thomas Edison and his failures, or when his factory burned down. They were terrible. Or where they?
“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work”
–Thomas A. Edison
Over and over I get slapped in the face with things that just can’t possibly co-exist. Opposites. Contradictions. Big things and small.
Scientists, engineers and mathematicians tell us things like:
- Light is particles. And waves
- Parallel lines, if extended to infinity, cross
- Space is warped
- Time and gravity impact each other
- Time speeds up or slows down depending on how fast your are moving
- Time doesn’t exist. (but didn’t it yesterday?) So how does it slow down?
Funny how these same scientists will use conundrums to “prove” that God isn’t real. Sure, there are many biblical and Christian paradoxes. I’ve made a list of a few.
Paradox. Conundrum. Contradiction. They are all around us. Life gets easier when you embrace them!
Last Updated: 10/18/2014
If you find these Beginnings posts of interest, you can find a full list here.
(Yes, that is the plural of Paradox, I looked it up)
Paradox: “truth standing on her head to get attention”
–G. K. Chesterton
Maybe conundrum would be a better word. You choose.
I’ve been a collector of some oddities for years. Below is a sampling. This particular set is slightly theology oriented. Keep in mind, I’m not a theologian. I believe God operates in paradox all the time. In many ways, “paradox” is another name for God! So, with that minor introduction, here are a few things that I find interesting, or even perplexing! I hope no one perceives any irreverence in this. Certainly not my intent!
- God wants communication/connection/relationship, yet is invisible/silent!
- Lose your life to find it
- Die to live
- First will be last, and vice versa
- Servant vs. leader
- Understanding vs. childlike faith
- Free will vs. predestination
- Our “call” to be sinless; original sin; the plan for salvation before the formation of the world
- God is not the author of sin; Satan’s fall from heaven (sin even in heaven?); Satan’s placement on earth of all places!
- Desire/Pleasure (lust) vs. Obedience
- Humility vs. God’s glory
- Male sexuality vs. purity/fidelity (or female attractiveness vs. fidelity)
- Man is made in the image of God, yet not to be like God (especially in glory)
- God is spirit, we are physical
- Spiritual warfare — we’re told of it, to be prepared, but it’s invisible to us!
- Faith vs. curiosity? (less of a paradox, perhaps)
- Spiritual warfare vs. the Peace of God
- God’s “love for all” vs. the billions apparently destined for Hell. (created for this very purpose according to Proverbs?!)
- Complete surrender (to Christ) to have victory. (must fail to succeed?)
- God’s testing vs. Satan’s tempting (God does not tempt)
- God is truth vs. use of lies [espec in old testament]
- God’s sovereignty vs. our ability to sin
- Prayer vs. God’s sovereignty. Is prayer like fuel? Does it change God?
- Sovereignty vs. fatalism (why try?)
- Omni-present and invisible
- God’s wisdom vs. man’s foolishness
- Trinity – a single spirit vs. Christ praying to the Father.
- Power is revealed through vulnerability and risk
- Greatness is shown in humility
- Wealth is revealed through giving away
- Love is revealed through Sacrifice
- Victory comes through surrender
- God as father, yet few (none?) examples of good fathers in the Bible
- David, man after God’s heart, and Solomon, wisest who ever lived. Both miserable failures at family, both enticed by sex
- Selfish Wants lead to dissatisfaction, even death!
- Want of heaven is usually weaker than want to immediate gratification
What would you add?