Rob Bell has created a podcast entitled "Robcast". It is not bad if you like Rob Bell but if you don't then you might not. I happen to like him and so I am enjoying the "Robcast".
In the second episode Bell spoke of the saying: first a mountain is a mountain and a river is a river, then a mountain is not a mountain and a river is not a river, and then a mountain is a mountain and a river is a river again.
Bell goes through and talks about how when we are young we believe things are what others tell us they are. A river is a river and a mountain is a mountain. God is in heaven, Jesus died for you, etc.
At some point in our lives we begin to question everything. This is natural and only the most insecure of adults fear this when they see younger generations go through this process of deconstructing. A river is no longer a river and a mountain is no longer a mountain. God is not in heaven, Jesus did not die for you specifically, etc.
This is where the challenge is. Once we deconstruct the things in our lives, the next part of life is to reconstruct something out of those pieces. Over time many of the things that we learned when we were small and then broke apart begin to make sense in a different way than they did before. We may not believe that God is an actual man in the clouds, but we are comfortable talking about the hands and feet of God once again. We understand things in a different way even though we may use language we previously dismissed. The river is a river again, and the mountain is a mountain again. God is in heaven, Jesus died for you, etc.
Not everything will return. That is true. After Seminary I cannot go back to seeing God exclusively as a male. After my sons were born I cannot go back to seeing God as demanding the death of Jesus. After seeing where the logic takes me, I can no longer affirm that everything happens for a reason. There are somethings that may be discarded for a long time.
First a mountain is a mountain and a river is a river, then a mountain is not a mountain and a river is not a river, and then a mountain is a mountain and a river is a river again.