God always acts like Himself, wherever He may be and whatever He may be doing; in Him there is neither variableness nor shadow of turning. Yet His infinitude places Him so far above our knowing that a lifetime spent in cultivating the knowledge of Him leaves as much yet to learn as if we had never begun. God's limitless knowledge and perfect wisdom enable Him to work rationally beyond the bounds of our rational knowing. For this reason we cannot predict God's actions as we can predict the movements of the heavenly bodies, so He constantly astonishes us as He moves in freedom through His universe. So imperfectly do we know Him that it may be said that one invariable concomitant of a true encounter with God is delighted wonder. No matter how high our expectation may be, when God finally moves into the field of our spiritual awareness we are sure to be astonished by His power to be more wonderful than we anticipate, and more blessed and marvelous than we had imagined He could be. Yet in a measure His actions may be predicted, for, as I have said, He always acts like Himself. Since we know, for instance, that God is love, we may be perfectly sure that love will be present in His every act, whether it be the salvation of a penitent sinner or the destruction of an impenitent world. Similarly we can know that He will always be just, faithful, merciful and true.