Recently I was talking with a colleague about the nature of God and how sometimes we lean too exclusively toward the transcendence of God—God is mighty and distant and all powerful, concerned only with judging us. Then at times we lean a bit too much on the immanence of God, believing that God is present in a personal way—God is your buddy and life coach and hooks you up with sweet parking spaces. This caused my friend to say that sometimes it seems that if God walked into the room, the question would no longer be whether anyone would recognize God. The question would be whether anyone would stand up.
We have perhaps made God so personal that we no longer touch the mystery and mastery of God’s holiness, instead making God an eccentric, benevolent, wealthy uncle of some sort. But if we think God is so removed and unknowable and arbitrary and disengaged, we miss the reality of how God reveals God’s self in the absolutely ordinary.