concerning mysteries and their resolutions

Sherlock Holmes and his intrepid colleague Dr. Watson were an unlikely duo. Holmes was brilliant, though exceedingly peculiar, no doubt a consequence of his admitted cocaine habit. Watson served as his less astute conversation partner, asking those questions to which Holmes would invariably reply, “Elementary, my dear Watson. Simply elementary.”

As odd and dysfunctional as their relationship was, it worked in the context of their many adventures. Sadly, it suffered during those seasons between adventures, Holmes returning to his reclusive, depressed, drug addicted ways, and Watson lamenting the fact.

Watson sought domestic tranquility. That is to say he wanted to marry, which in fact he eventually did. Holmes only sought the next vexing mystery. He longed to utter, “The game is afoot.” Invariably, Watson would once again get caught up in the next great pursuit, both to chronicle it and to participate, if only to watch Holmes’ back.

Their partnership was an odd ebb and flow of mysteries, resolutions, and interludes awaiting the next great diabolical case.

Think about the partnerships, friendships, and family relationships in your life. Is there a seasonal ebb and flow? How do you handle the more difficult situations or seasons? How do you make it work? In the case of Holmes and Watson, it is clear to me that Watson is the unsung hero who helps Holmes hold his life together after a fashion, notwithstanding Holmes’ troubling descents into intoxication during his dark periods. What do you do when someone you care about seems about to go off the deep end spiritually, emotionally, etc? How do you help them re-engage?

Watson only knew to introduce new mysteries to Holmes. Perhaps we would do well to introduce to those closest to us the greatest mystery of all in the person and work of Jesus Christ. On the other hand, it might be us who needs such a reminder.


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