In this world, no path ever seems straight. It's a convoluted mess and at every crossroad a scarecrow vapidly saying you could go either way. Well you'll never get to Oz with directions like that, much less somewhere here. But giving up every part of your faith to an unknown factor? That's terrifying. It just is.
There is no easy way to explain the mechanics of the revelation I faced when reading this verse, let alone the enormity of the maelstrom that swept through me. I feel like it's something I've attempted before with little luck. Nevertheless.
To me God is is in everything... or perhaps that is to say everything is a part of God. And by that I do mean everything. Everyone, every theology, and every action taken, every thought conceived and emotion felt. All the good. All the bad. All a fragment of the ineffable from the perspective of whoever perceives that faint echo of the truth none can understand in its entirety. I suppose this is my sliver of perspective, my vain attempt at understanding the wonders and horrors around me. Ultimately right or wrong, it's how I see things at this point in my life.
Lean not on your own understanding. Does that mean you understanding is all wrong? I don't think so. I think it means something a little sideways. I think it doesn't invalidate everything you know, think, and see. The sky is still blue. The Earth still goes around the sun. To me, it brings to mind where that understanding comes from. Does it truly come from the works of men alone? Or does it come down through the centuries, a conglomerated care package of God for his children? A way for the individual to find bedrock in interacting with the world?
To be of God, so is our understanding. But I'd rather lean not on my understanding alone, but rather acknowledge how small it is compared to the entirety. That's my faith. That's what I understand.
That I don't understand. Not the whole picture.
So I yield, I surrender, I submit. And even though I still have crossroads of confusion where that pesky scarecrow is pointing both directions, I don't feel as lost. I have faith in my understanding, and more importantly that there is a greater understanding out there that I may be gifted glimpses at along the way.
I trust in the Lord.