It is what it is

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I continue to enjoy truisms that seem to crop up regularly. Football commentators saying, ‘It’s not over till it’s over.’ Friends describing their taste in music: ‘I like what I like.’ Shops announcing, ‘When it’s gone, it’s gone.’

My favourite? ‘It is what it is’. I’ve several friends who use this expression; one used it 6 times in a recent conversation.

Musing on the story of Moses, a desert shepherd who encounters a burning bush that talks to him. Moses realises that it’s God speaking. Understandably he asks a number of questions – ‘Who… how… why… and what’s your name?’ God’s answer: ‘I am who I am’…

It’s OK to ask questions: Our world demands many national or political questions. The ones that exercise me most are the immediate and personal – about family, health, relationships…

Today we’ve been discussing recent deaths that have affected us – Steph, George, Lyn, Lloyd, Mike… All have raised questions. It’s OK to ask them.

It’s OK not to get full answers: ‘It is what it is’ or ‘I am who I am’ is not a full and complete answer – particularly for those who like logical, tidy solutions.

There are times when those are all we have. Pushing for greater clarity will get us nowhere. It’s the best we can do – and that’s OK.

An incomplete answer may be best: Accepting an incomplete answer in the present means we can move on; it also means that we can return to the question later, to get further understanding and clarity.

Personal questions about family, health and relationships often need to be returned to.

And the question of who God is returns repeatedly. Jesus clarifies with statements like ‘I am… the bread of life, the good shepherd…’

It’s a question I return to and discover that the incomplete answer leaves me wanting to understand more. ‘I am who I am’? ‘It is what it is’.

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