Weight of the World

Just as you do not know how the breath comes to the bones in the mother’s womb, so you do not know the work of God, who makes everything. -Ecclesiastes 11:5

Dear members and friends,

Our life is once again deeply challenged by Covid-19, especially by the Omicron variant. Though there is much data and publications by scientists and experts available to read, they do not seem to bring any comfort or peace of mind. On top of this, there is the sad news about the wildfire in Colorado, which burned more than 600 homes. If you would like, I am sure that you might be able to find even more news about how things are negative in the world. Does this mean that everything in this world is bad? Of course not! Yet, people tend to pay more attention to the negative aspects of life than the positive. Paying deeper attention to the troubles and problems in the world is neither good nor bad, but it becomes problematic when this act fills our minds with concerns and worries, which are often unrealistic and unhelpful. Further, a mind filled with concerns and worries tends to perceive matters and events in a narrow way, which tends to be negative, and could cause problems in relationships. Thus, it is always a relationship disaster when two minds filled with concerns and worries collide into each other. The root of this problem could be identified as our self-confidence in our own knowledge: due to the information we accumulate, a tendency grows within our minds either to believe that “I know many things,” or even to believe that “what I know is right!” 

Whenever I feel that my ego is rising up and whispering to my heart about how knowledgeable and capable I may be, I read and meditate on Ecclesiastes and the words of the wisest king in the Bible, King Solomon. He insists, “Just as you do not know how the breath comes to the bones in the mother’s womb, so you do not know the work of God, who makes everything.” In truth, what we know about the world and even ourselves is very little. When we are willing to let go of the self-created illusion about what we think we know, true knowledge and wisdom might open its door to us. What makes us a truer human is not confidence in what we know, but humility in what we do not know. 

My brothers and sisters in God, for this week I would like to invite you all to take a moment and meditate on letting go. Let go of all concerns and worries, because in essence there is a big chance that none of them would become real, or at the least we do not know. Let go of all self-created expectations, because in reality we are not in control of our life or the world. Let go of burdens and heavy loads, because truly we are not carrying them. 

Blessings, Rev. Junchol Lee