The tip of the iceberg

icebergI came across this quote this week from an interview of the late Robert F. Capon conducted by our own Pastor Timothy Brassell.

“Sin is not a problem with God. God solved all his problems with sin before the foundation of the world, in the beginning—and it’s done. The iceberg that lies under the surface of history is the Son of God; redemption is the mystery behind all history. Sin is a permanent irrelevancy. And God is the one to say, “Look, I have taken away the handwriting that was against you.” ~ Robert F. Capon.

There’s a lot to talk about in response to this wonderful observation, but what really jumped out at me was the analogy of Jesus to an iceberg.

As is commonly known, as much as 90% of an iceberg exists below the surface of the water.

I don’t know about you, but it comforts me to know that I simply cannot know everything about Jesus — not even close. I consciously exist in the world above the surface of the water. To me, it looks like it is all that there is.

The analogy of him as a solid iceberg is also comforting because often my faith seems the opposite of anything so solid as an iceberg. It feels unstable, vaporous, changeable.

In a very interesting book called Code to Joy, I learned that human consciousness is also like an iceberg, with the conscious mind being the part rising out of the water; the unconscious mind the much larger part beneath the water. This carries enormous implications for our human experience.

All that we know — all that humanity has ever consciously known — of Jesus is just the tip of the iceberg. All that we know consciously of anything at all is also the tip of the iceberg.

So if your faith feels unstable, vaporous and changeable at times too — while at other times, your heart, body and soul throb with resonance of truth — could it be that the much larger part of who we are — our unconscious — sees, knows and experiences more than we are aware of consciously? Science tells us that it does.

If you look out at the world and it seems incomplete, what you are seeing is just the tip of the iceberg. It is incomplete — but only the part of it that we consciously see.

If you look at the earth, spinning slowly and alone in an unfathomably large, black universe and you get a chill, what you are seeing is just the tip of the iceberg. We are not alone out there.

If you look out at the world and you see incredible beauty, what you are seeing is just the tip of the iceberg. What we see, as glorious as it is, is merely a dim shadow of what is.

If you look out at the world and you see pain, suffering, injustice, horror and hopelessness too much of the time, what you are seeing is just the tip of the iceberg. Hope, justice, and healing lie beneath every situation, even if it is never to fully materialise in this life.

If you read the Bible and it confuses you sometimes, what you are reading is just the tip of the iceberg. It’s solid, because what lies beneath it is solid — but it’s not everything.

Unlike the famous iceberg against which the Titanic broke itself, Jesus once and for all time allowed himself to be broken against humanity so we could see consciously that he loves us. (It may be that every human knows it unconsciously.) He is pure love. Father, Son and Spirit are pure love.

The kind of love we have only ever consciously seen or experienced the tip of its iceberg. There is nothing unstable, vaporous or changeable about it.

It’s a solid rock.

~ Jeannine Buntrock

2 comments so far

  1. Pat on

    This news surely fills me with praise. AGAIN AND AGAIN!!!!!!!

    • John on

      Thanks Jeannine
      Good News Isn’t it? It has already be forwarded to numerous people.

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