a high view of God

9 06 2009

i am totally ripping this from mark batterson’s incredible book, in a pit with a lion on a snowy day.  it is a great piece that i want to share and hopefully challenge you with. as a side note, if you are some one who has found themselves in the middle of a transition, you need this book!

according to a.w. tozer, the most important thing about you is what comes to mind when you think about God.

“… the most portentous fact about any man is not what he at any given time may say or do, but what he in his deep heart conceives God to be like…  were we able to extract from any man a complete answer to the question, ‘what comes to your mind when you think about God?’ we might predict with certainty the spiritual future of that man. (a.w. tozer, the knowledge of the holy)

how you think about God will determine who you become.  you aren’t just a byproduct of “nature” and “nurture”.  you are a byproduct of your God-picture.  and that internal picture of God determines how you see everything else.

most of our problems are not circumstantial.  most of our problems are perceptual.  our biggest problems can be traced back to an inadequate understanding of who God is.  our problems seem really big because our God seems really small.  in fact, we reduce God to the size of our biggest problem.

tozer said a “low view of God… is the cause of a hundred lesser evils.”  but a person with a high view of God “is relieved of ten thousand temporal problems.”

“I don’t think the way you think.
The way you work isn’t the way I work.”
God’s Decree.
“For as the sky soars high above earth,
so the way I work surpasses the way you work,
and the way I think is beyond the way you think. – isaiah 55:8-9 (the message)

i can certainly attest this principle to be true in my own life.  i can look back on specific instances when how i approached or walked through a particular situation in my life was in direct correlation to how i perceived God in that season of my life.  i am thankful that seasons change and we grow, thus providing opportunities for our understanding and perception of God in our lives to increase as well.  there are things that happened to me in the past which, were they to play out again today, would not produce the same response from me, primarily because of who i am continually becoming as a direct result of what i continually and increasingly understand about God.

what about you?  how has your approach to life been altered by your perception and understanding of who God is over the years?

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what it was really all about a/k/a perception a/k/a less like scars

29 12 2008

2008 is winding down… lots of thoughts today.

what did 2008 bring to you? more importantly, how do you perceive what 2008 brought to you and how has your perception shaped your response?

“God is in the business of strategically positioning us in the right place at the right time.  but the right place often seems like the wrong place, and the right time often seems like the wrong time.”  –  mark batterson from in a pit with a lion on a snowy day (a book which i will be referring to a lot in the coming months)

sure, it’s cliche to say ‘perception is reality’, but it’s quite often true.  but the fact that your perception can often shape your reality can be dangerous, especially if your perception is skewed in any way.  if your perception is tainted, your reality will be twisted.

i love this song by sara groves called ‘less like scars’.  the essence of the song is that “time” is the great equalizer, and the perspective that it brings will often shine a light on what you thought “it” was, and reveal what “it” really was.

“less like tearing, more like building / less like captive, more like willing
less like breakdown, more like surrender / less like haunting, more like remember

and i feel You here, and You’re picking up the pieces, forever faithful
it seemed out of my hands, a bad situation, but You are able
and in Your hands the pain and hurt look less like scars
and more like character

less like a prison, more like my room / it’s less like a casket, more like a womb
less like dying, more like transcending / less like fear, less like an ending”

sara groves – “less like scars”

there is a lot of wisdom there, and that doesn’t happen overnight.  it takes time and a lot of spiritual maturity to get to the point where you can look back on the road that brought you to the place where you now stand and not only see it as purposeful, but truly believe that every moment was divinely deliberate, even though you couldn’t see it.  as ’08 comes to a close, can you look at what you thought afflicted you and see it as something that empowered you… can you see what looked like a scar and see it as character… intentionally and specifically designed to equip you for what you couldn’t see yet?

i believe 2009 is going to be an amazing and important year.  i strongly believe that if you look through the eyes of faith in ’09, you will see what ’08 was really about.