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Bringing It Into Focus

A few weeks ago I stopped short in a post.  I asked a question and left it hanging.

I started a conversation about how the lens we look at God thru can distort our thoughts about him.  Fear and worry, as well as a myriad of other things, can get in between us and the Lord.  I proposed there is a better option.  That option is the one we are going to look at today.

What if we traded our fear, wounds and insecurity lens in for Jesus lens.

If we looked at the Father through the life of Jesus Christ, how would that impact the way we view the Father.

We are told that Jesus is the “exact representation” of the Father.  (Hebrews 1:3)   It does not say “similar” it says “exact.”  If we see Jesus we are not seeing something like God, we are seeing God.  He IS God.  So, if we see Jesus, we see the Father.  Those characteristics demonstrated in the life of the Jesus are there because Jesus came to let us see our Father.

Jesus only did what He saw His Father doing (John 5:19) and He did not speak on His own but only what the Father directed him to say. (John 12: 49)

So let’s break that down.  The love and care that Jesus shared with all those He came in contact with…that was all God.

Stopping for the hurting and wounded…the Father.

The woman caught in adultery and the creative solution…our good Dad.

The frustration toward the religious leaders taking advantage of believers in the temple…again, God.

Often times we have believed that Jesus was a truly nice guy.  But God?  Harsh and distant may be closer to the truth.

So why did Jesus come?  God’s greatest desire was to make a way for us to be in a relationship with him (like Adam and Eve had in the Garden).  Sin keeps us from God.  Our sin causes wall between us and the Lord.  But even if Jesus just dealt with our sin problems, why would we want to draw near to God if these misconceptions were all we knew about Him?  We need new lens with which to view the Father.

One of the main reasons that Jesus came was so we could really begin to know who our Father REALLY is.  He came to show us, in flesh, how loved we are by our Father.  Thankfully, He wants to offer us a healthy framework or foundation with which we can truly walk into a relationship with our Good Dad.

The first step is considering the life of Jesus.  Does what we see in the life of Jesus mesh with what we believe about God the Father.  When we hit a snag we can stop and think about that for  awhile.  Asking some questions to discern why we think one thing about Jesus and another about the Father would be a good first step.  Identifying  inconsistencies will help us take a fresh new look at God.  Praying into the struggles we notice and asking God to teach us more about Himself is a another excellent opportunity for growth.

Relationships are valuable and a relationship with God is paramount.  If you have always felt like He was distant this is a place to start.  The truth is we are invited to be his children (Romans 8:16) and we are called his friends (John 15:15).

You are invited to walk WITH God.  He dearly loves you.  You are so loved that He put on flesh and came to live among us.  (John 1:14)  That is just how important you are!

 

 

 

 

 

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What is On Your Lens?

 

Who is God?  But with this question comes a problem.  We have to evaluate HOW we see God.

Some of us have been taught that God is a harsh, judgmental, angry dad.  Maybe we think God is an uninterested and distant being who really has much better things to think about than you and your little problem.

These views could not be further from the truth.

In the Bible Belt a lot of us say that, “God is good!”  And a resounding response is “All the time, and all the time God is good.”

But do we really mean it?  Do we really believe it in our deep down “knower”?

We all wear filtering glasses. These glasses cause us to view God through this lens.  So, could what we believe about God be skewed, due to our skewed lens?

What is on the lens of your glasses?  Maybe you have these words written across your lens:

  • Wounds

Our wounds effect how we see God.  Physical pain in our body can effect our thought patterns and we make decisions we would never make otherwise.  If we are wounded spiritually or emotionally we tend to act the same way.  Our wounds can distort the truth of who God is.  The tenderness of our wounds can cause us to pull away from God and other people as we seek to self-protect.

  • Experiences

Our experiences can cause us to make judgements.  We may decide God didn’t take care of us.  We can look at other peoples’ lives and think that God didn’t take very good care of them either. Why should we trust Him when we think that we have already seen Him NOT take care of us and others?

  • Lessons

Some of us have been taught that God is harsh and angry from other people who think that is the truth.  Maybe we met God through people who used guilt and condemnation to cause us to make a decision.  If all we have ever heard is that God is angry or disinterested in us, then how would we ever think anything else?

  • Fear

Many people are afraid they have to sacrifice in order to become a believer.  Often people are scared of what others might think of them.  Some would rather settle for the status quo instead of going against the flow.

The list could go on and on.  Our glasses could have hundreds of different lens of negative things that distort our view of our loving Dad.

I propose a better option…

(You can check out that option at Bringing It Into Focus )