Don’t you think that God could have made it easier for us to know Him and serve Him if we could see Him? Doesn’t serving an invisible God seem — unrealistic? He could have set this up any way He wanted. Why this way?
I actually asked God that question. Here’s what I came away with. If we could see God, that would mean that He’d have to be in a certain place for us to go to, like a temple. If we were to go to Him in His temple, we’d naturally approach Him with a sense of awe. There’d always been a feeling of unworthiness in us because of the distance that a physical presence would impose. He would always be LORD GOD ALMIGHTY, the somewhat frightening figure we’d face, no matter how nice He wanted to look. Then we would leave there and go on about our lives.
But God understands relationship better than we do. When He puts His Spirit in us, we become one. He’s with us always. He knows our hopes and fears. We can feel His presence in a way that approaching Him in a temple would never offer. And when we go on about our lives, and He comes too. He never wanted distance. He always wanted relationship. And He didn’t want it forced. When we choose to serve Him, as in invisible God, He knows we mean it.
Serving an invisible God takes faith, but once He responds to that faith, He becomes more real than we thought. Faith in what we can’t see becomes the greater reality. Yes, it could have been different, but God’s ways are higher than ours. Thankfully.
When you love God with all your heart, your soul and your mind, something happens in your spirit. You get hungry for more. Suddenly those nice Bible stories aren’t enough. You want to dive into His Spirit until your are completely submerged in His presence.
And then something amazing happens. As you step toward Him, He steps toward you. Deep calls unto deep at the noise of Your waterfalls; All Your waves and billows have gone over me. (Ps 42:7) He answers the deep hunger of your soul with the same intensity that you cry out to Him.
Do you wonder why you’re not getting dramatic breakthrough? Maybe it’s because you’re not hungry enough. Maybe you need that deep cry of your soul to well up to heaven. God will answer sincerity, but He pours out on intense desire for more of Him.
But it doesn’t stop there. As He answers your desire for more, you actually get hungry for even more! There is no end. The more you ask for, the more He will give. Soon, you are sharing the secret places of the Spirit with Him and walking in companionship with the Most High God.
Get hungry. Cry out for more. Dive in. You’re missing so much.
Polytheists believe in multiple gods because of human limitation. It’s just too hard to conceive that one God could be all things. They have a god to bless grapes and wine, one god to bless fish, one god to bless childbirth, etc. One God with unlimited power and knowledge goes beyond what we can know in the natural.
That’s why there are so many names of God:
Jehovah Jireh – the Lord our provider
Jehovah Shalom – The Lord our peace
Jehovah Nissi – The Lord our banner
Jehovah Rapha – The Lord our healer
Jehovah Tsid-Kenu – The Lord our Righteousness
Jehovah Shammah – The Lord who is everywhere
Jehovah Sabaoth – The Lord our protector
Jehovah Raah – The Lord who leads us tenderly
King of Kings
Lord of Lords
Alpha and Omega
Lion of Judah
Prince of Peace
Lamb of God
Bright and Morning Star
Lily of the Valley
Rose of Sharon
One God is everything that we need. He made sure that we were covered by His grace and power in every area of our lives. One true and living God. And the more we know Him, the more more infinite He becomes. He will always be everything to us, for eternity.
I recently came across someone’s post online that I didn’t agree with. They were expressing some doubt about the validity of a certain ministry that I respect and admire. I didn’t get irate, but I was annoyed. If the ministry was operating according to Biblical principles, why question them? How do people choose which scriptures to believe in and which they don’t?
Fortunately, I stopped myself from answering back and starting an online holy war. But I did talk to God about it. He said, “Don’t be offended for me.”
Whoa! What a good answer. As soon as I heard that, I realized that I was being offended for Him. I very quickly remembered that He doesn’t need my help. He’s very capable of managing His own PR.
It’s one thing to answer questions or clarify a misconception, but arguments lead nowhere. Give the issues to God and let Him work them out in peace. It saves a lot of ill will and bad feelings. There’s a lot of wisdom in staying quiet.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. (Ps 23:4)
Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, or from the mailbox with a handful of bills, or stare at my five-year plan with no idea what I should be doing — God is with me. His name is Emmanuel, God with us. His rod and staff are there to guide me, if I choose to be guided.
Everything we face on a daily basis can be managed with divine insight and help. God knows everything we’re up against. He knows the dark future you can’t see into. He’s there to help. Be humble and ask. Listen with your heart. Be obedient to what you know to be true.
You may make mistakes along the way, but don’t fret about it. God knows and He still has a great plan for you, and that includes your mistakes. Your valley of the shadow of death is just another path that you walk with God. When your eyes are on Him, you don’t see anything scary along the way. He makes every walk a delight.
Our Western culture is not used to the concept of praising God. It sounds like anyone who demands praise is ego-centric. It’s hard to wrap our heads around God asking us to do that. But not only is He justified, He is God after all, there are other reasons for doing it.
When we tell God how great He is, we are reminded of His power. Are there issues in your life that you need a miracle for? Your powerful God is able to be everything that you need. As we praise Him, we are filled with the awareness of His greatness, and suddenly our pressing need doesn’t sound very scary at all.
When we tell Go how beautiful and amazing He is, we begin to see His finger everywhere. We look at sunsets, flowers, a baby’s giggle and know that our amazing God has been at work. Everything that is beautiful is touched by Him.
Our praise to Him actually fills us with a greater understanding of Him. He promised to meet every need and give us joy. That comes from our awareness of who He is. The next time you are in a position to really praise God, pay attention to what He is giving back to you. It will make you praise Him more.
One way to grow in love and faith in God is to think about how amazing He is. Pick one aspect of God, maybe His kindness, and think about it. Give yourself an entire day to just think of all the ways that God has been kind to you. Look up scripture on His kindness. Ask Him to show Himself kind to you. Ask Him to help you show His kindness to other people.
It may be that as you dive into how kind God is, you begin to learn more about it. It may take you another day to keep learning more. Maybe a week. Maybe you just get into how kind God is and take as long as you want to explore it.
Then pick another aspect of God and concentrate on that. You could do that every single day for the rest of your life and never run out of amazing things to dwell on. Get to know God. Get to know how truly awesome He is. It will make you appreciate Him so much. And as you do, you’ll trust Him more because you know Him better. You may discover that He’s not exactly who you thought He was.
The Bible makes it very clear that everything we do should be done in love. 1 Corinthians 13 is the field guide for explaining that. Well, that’s all good and all, but how do you do it? Can you just decide to start acting in love?
To some extent, yes, but that won’t get you all the way. God has to help. You have to hand over your heart to Him and let Him fill you with His Spirit. He has all the love you need.
But there is another element that you need to be truly loving. You need to understand how much God loves you. Until we get to heaven, we may never have a full revelation of what that means, but the more we understand, the more it will change us. Ask God to show you how much He loves you. Ask Him for a real revelation of His love for you.
If you could get your head around God-sized love, enough to suffer and die for you, it will change your outlook on your love for Him and everyone else. And when you do get a picture of that, ask to understand more. His love is deep and you’ll never get to the bottom of it. You can keep learning more and more and never run out.
God wants us to understand His word. When Jesus met the two disciples walking to Emmaus, He explained it to them: And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself. (Luke 24:27)When He appeared to the disciples after His resurrection, … He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures. (Luke 24:45)
But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. (John 14:26)
The only reason you may not understand the Bible is because you haven’t asked God to help you. He’s not going to force feed you or give you an instant download. It’s going to take daily reading and prayer and a willingness to hear Him. As you read, listen with your heart. Be ready to unlearn what you thought you knew about somethings. The traditions of men have become strong, so be open to letting God teach you His truth. The Bible is a fantastic revelation of God and will take you deep into His heart.
I love how we have a tidy ideal of what God does and how He acts. But it’s hard to hold onto that when we read the Bible. The Old Testaments prophets were told to do some strange things, like walk around naked or marry a prostitute. Jesus spit on a man to heal him.
I think that God has to go to some extremes with us just to get our attention. We have everything all worked out in our head and God’s trying to show us that He’s not in our plan. Then, when He does something outrageous, we get offended and say it can’t possibly be God, because He doesn’t act like that. But not according to the Bible.
God can act any way He wants, and without our permission. Once we decree what He will or will not do, we set ourselves up for some surprising reactions from heaven. We need to be careful judging what we see. We’re told to test the spirit. If the spirit of God is in the middle of it, then no matter how strange it looks, we’d best not judge it.
It’s always possible for God to do something so far outside the box that we don’t recognize Him. Let’s watch and pray so we don’t miss anything He does. Let’s not be left behind what ever He’s doing.