I am listening to my husband’s favorite podcaster, who is discussing the meanings of knowledge and experience and how the two relate to relationships. Since we have just one word for information: knowledge. When we know propositions and facts—basic and quantifiable—they suggest that there is still something missing in the element of relationship. He read an evaluation of Facebook that shared the same ideas. Knowing height, birthplace, favorites, aversions and daily activities isn’t actually what friendship is about. True relationships (he sited David & Jonathan and Ruth & Naomi) happen when depth in engaged, which happens with experiences shared together. The former description is knowledge OF; the latter is just knowledge.
Who do you know? Does anyone know you? Or has life been reduced to simple facts? What about God? Do you know Him or just about Him? Do you spend time to maintain knowledge and relationship?
This is a good reminder for me. Relationships are ridiculously important to me. I have begun thinking that I need to end that. It hurts too much, especially when others decide that they prefer the fact- and surface-level relationships. To be shoved back is shocking. Unpleasantly so. It is easier to just pull in, joke and smile and never let anyone actually know me.
I have just recently been reading 1 Samuel and the relationship between David and Jonathan. It is shocking in a different way. These two men loved one another; So much so that today it is an example of acceptable homosexuality in Scriptures by some who maintain that homosexuality is not a sin. What this tells me is that close relationships are so rare these days that people can’t even comprehend or entertain the idea that two people could be so very close without the relationship becoming sexual.
I started to get lofty in evaluating the state of our society, being so go-go-go, that the art of relationships is lost. It has been poorly but nearly completely replaced by the quick-bites of Twitter and Facebook—where there is an actual character limit in what you share—don’t go talking TOO much about yourself or your ideas!! I don’t have time for that!
But I won’t go there. Relationships are personal, so blaming society is a cop-out. We each are responsible for our own choices and actions. I have to choose if it is worth the hurt to open myself to be known by others. I have to choose to know God more than I know about Him. Or not. Either way, these are my choices. Societal trends may add challenges to achieving the goals that drive my choices, but cannot be used as a valid excuse for giving up our right and duty to choose.