Tuesday, July 22, 2014

July 22, 2013 - Along the way ...

I wonder about the ways in which God reveals Himself.   I know that He reveals Himself through His Word, His world and His Spirit, and most poignantly through Jesus, but I wonder what that looks like on a day to day basis.

We are often told how important it is to read the Bible regularly, but for what purpose?   If reading the  Bible is just something on my daily "to do" list, or is something I do to merely confirm that which I already know, then I think we are missing the real reason for reading in the first place.

We read the Bible because in its pages we meet the living God.   We see what He is like.  We learn what He desires.  We also hear His voice calling us to the obedience which comes from faith.

Reading the Bible is not a chore or a daily task, it is an invitation to sit at Jesus' feet and be fed, nourished, and refreshed; to be called out and sent; to join Him in His great kingdom venture; and to be reminded that my greatest identity is found in who I am in relation to Him.

But what about some of the other ways God reveals Himself to us?

In creation, we see God's power displayed, we learn about His providential care, and we wonder at the beauty of His imagination that could conjure up the diversity we experience in so many ways.
Creation reveals God to us as well.  It leaves us in awe and wonder.  Not so that we will worship the creation but that we will stand in awe and wonder and fall in worship at the majesty of the Creator.

God also reveals Himself through Jesus.  In Jesus, we see most clearly what God is like.  If we wonder how God might treat a person caught in sin, we look at Jesus.  If we wonder what God might do for those we meet on the streets, who are hungry or in need, we look to Jesus.  If we wonder about God's purpose for suffering and evil in the world as we experience it, we look to Jesus.   Jesus shows us Who God is.   In Jesus, we see God's heart and witness His being, His character, and His perfect image.

Moreover, God reveals Himself through other people.   In our relationships, we see God, though imperfectly, because each of us bears God's image - some clearer than others - but God's image is visible in everyone.

I remember how God revealed Himself through a University of Maryland professor at Misawa Air Base in Japan in a Speech class.   The professor was an avowed atheist, and challenged us to think critically about our faith.  He sent me on a journey of discovery, which ultimately led me to a greater understanding and appreciation for Who God is.   God used Dr. Ruffino in a way that Dr. Ruffino was not even aware, and God revealed His glory through a self-avowed atheist.   That is the power of God!

Finally, all of God's revelation is mediated by the Holy Spirit.   It is the Holy Spirit who gives us the eyes of faith by which we can see what is unseen and eternal.  It is the Holy Spirit who shows us Who God is, What He is like, and What great things He has done, is doing, and will continue to do.   It is the Holy Spirit Who gives us hope and draws us ever closer to the living God.

So I wonder about the ways in which God reveals Himself.  Do you?  How does God reveal Himself to you?  Can you share a time where you saw God in an unexpected way, and it brought you closer to Him?  Together we can share what God is saying to each of us, and together we will see God a little more clearly, as we journey together along the way ...

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