There is a lot of not knowing happening these days. While “I don’t know” is a beautiful way to start a sentence, and affirm our current condition, what comes after is equally important. Here are some examples I’ve heard myself say:
“I don’t know, and that makes me useless.”
“I don’t know, and that’s okay.”
“I don’t know, but I’m going to do my best to find out.”
These are worthy of some commentary:
“I don’t know, and that makes me useless,” is a complete lie (degrading a human being to a thing to be used or not, useful or not), and a horrible feeling to live in.
“I don’t know, and that’s okay,” is a kinder way of accepting our circumstance.
“I don’t know, but I’m going to do my best to find out,” is a lovely way to get to searching.
The above sentiments seem to work if I’m posing questions to myself, but what if the questions come from someone else? Someone I care about? Someone I would hate to see struggle with questions? This is where I’ve landed:
“I don’t know the answer, but I’m on your side, and can walk with you, and we can search together.”
Love doesn’t mandate a solution. Love mandates a relationship. It’s okay to not have the answer, and to walk with friends and neighbors. Maybe it’s just our job to celebrate when they find the answer themselves? Or maybe we’re to supposed to discover the answers together, bit by bit? Maybe our communal lack of knowledge will bring us closer together as we learn to trust each other’s vision in addition to our own?
Honestly, I don’t know, but I’d like to search with you.