The Beautiful Question

e.e. cummings wrote: "Always the beautiful answer who asks a more beautiful question.” I found a blog by a young man identified as Pat. He states:

Are you a question answerer by nature? I have come to believe with all of my heart that it is a profound and highly successful ministry that learns how to ask beautiful questions . . . . (Geography of Grace).

He is dealing specifically with ministry to at risk youth, but I think his insight is meaningful to us all. In “science” we spend much time answering questions. As a Pastor my response to questions from my parishioners is to try to authoritatively answer all questions related to Scripture, after all I have a M.Div. and a D.Min. and if I can’t answer the questions then what hope is there for anyone else? Lately, however, I’ve been more inclined to answer questions with questions for the purpose of helping others discover the truth that is revealed in Scripture. My goal is not the more beautiful answer, but the more beautiful question and along the way the humbling reality that I might just learn something as well.

cummings, e.e. Poems 1923-1954. NY: Harcourt, Brace and World, Inc. 1954.

Geography of Grace (n.d.) The art of asking beautiful questions. Retrieved July 1, 2008 from