Photo by Kathy Bozzuti-Jones

The Practice of Not Knowing

Have you ever had the experience of reading a passage of scripture for the umpteenth time and discovering that it means something new to you? Sunday’s epistle, 1 Thessalonians 5:1–11, with its assurance/warning about neither knowing nor needing to know “the times and the seasons,” has always come across to me as a reminder not to get caught up in doomsday prophecies. Now I’m reading it again and writing this note while (still) waiting to know the results of the recent election. Hopefully, by the time you’re reading this, we’ll know. But no matter what happens, our mission is the same, as our vicar reminded us after election day.

When the early church asked about Jesus’s return, they meant, “When will things be set right? When will we live according to God’s values, not Caesar’s?” That’s something we still yearn for. Our faith tells us not only to trust that the day will arrive but also to know that we’re called to do all we can to manifest the values of the kingdom here and now, in good times and bad.

This week’s formation resources offer ways to follow that calling.


Bob Scott
Director, Faith Formation & Education