Good morning. This is working theology.
In accounting, there are two types of transactions. Explicit transactions occur when cash exchanges for a good or service. You paid $20 for a haircut. You can explicitly record that transaction in your accounting book. The other type of transaction is a lot more interesting.
Implicit transactions occur over time without visible evidence. There isn’t a definite transaction taking place that you can record, until there is an explicit one. Like that famous Ernest Hemingway passage: “How did you go broke?” “Gradually, then suddenly.”
An example of an implicit transaction is rent. Let’s say your rent costs $3,000 every month, and you pay it on the thirtieth day of the month. The payment is an explicit transaction, which you would record in your ledger, while the daily accrual is an implicit transaction, which you don’t. In other words, the rent implicitly costs you $100 per day, though you pay explicitly in a lump sum.
Other examples of implicit transactions are wages, interest, depreciation, or insurance. For a more detailed explanation, see this page from my accounting textbook.
If you think about it, much of the Christian life is a series of implicit transactions. You have thousands of activities accruing day after day, year after year, growing and growing until the Great Accountant closes our books. We make decisions every day that may or may not glorify God or love our neighbor. These “transactions” accrue to our general ledger whether or not we even notice them.
People say they don’t believe in God because there isn’t any evidence of him, but perhaps the evidence is hidden in the passage of time, accruing like interest or rent. Similarly, you can’t “see” a person’s character until an event takes place to expose it. They could have great moral fiber, but until something calls it out, it lies dormant, hidden in the passage of time. Perhaps miracles are explicit transactions, when the Accountant jots down something powerful that enters into our earthly realm.
Or maybe the miracles of God are the implicit transactions, like when you’re able to get out of bed without something hurting, when breakfast tastes abnormally delicious, when a friend calls just to say hello, or you feel a tinge of gratitude after a long day’s work. These are the daily miracles that make up the good life.
I hope today you can sense the implicit transactions in your account.
Thanks for reading.