On what do I base my belief about the character and nature of God?
Do I base it on the promises of scripture? If so, then how do I reconcile what I perceive to be 'inconsistancies' between God's promises and the details of the unfolding of history? Why did God choose Jerobaum as a king of Israel? (For these questions were born out of my reading of 1 Kings 11-12.)
Do I base it on my own personal experiences? If so, then how do I know to trust God in times of trouble? If I say, I know God is good, because he has been good to me... Then what do I say when illness or difficulties come my way and I do not have immediate tangible evidence of God's goodness?
And yet, I know God is good. I trust Him even when I do not understand, will never understand the details of His plan. Do I simply say that my trust and knowledge of God's goodness is an blind act of faith? I am unsatisfied with that response. And yet the very nature of this dissatisfaction I cannot quantify. (Quantify is the wrong word there. Qualify? Explain? Bah.)
Do I place God on a scale and say His actions are more often good than bad? Never. Who am I to try to judge the Author of All? And like Job, if I can be so arrogant as to compare myself to Job, in the end I think that all my arguments and questions will come back to a single question which resounds with the truth of ages.
"Who is this that darkens my counsel
with words without knowledge?
3 Brace yourself like a man;
I will question you,
and you shall answer me.
4 "Where were you when I laid the earth's foundation?
Tell me, if you understand.
5 Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know!
Who stretched a measuring line across it?
6 On what were its footings set,
or who laid its cornerstone-
7 while the morning stars sang together
and all the angels shouted for joy?
It is, I think, no coincidence that the last few chapters of Job are among my favorite passages of scripture.