How well do you know God?
Do you see Him as an “out there” being who is gambling with your life?
Is He a cranky old judge, ready to dole out an indictment?
Or is He kind and gentle, gracious and forgiving?
Who we think God is, impacts everything about the way we live.
Growing up in an abusive home made it nearly impossible for me to see God as a loving father. My faith upbringing didn’t help either, as I believed I had to earn God’s love and blessing. Can you see how that might play out in my life, even today? Ahem, control issues. I always saw myself as needing to defend myself and provide for myself, because I didn’t believe that God would be there for me. Honestly, it’s a miracle I ever came to know Jesus as my Lord and Savior in college, considering my distorted thinking about God.
My mother-in-law was the first to impress upon my heart that God is Sovereign. For years, I didn’t know what that truly meant, and yet her words played on repeat in my brain until it sunk into my heart. The Holy Spirit prompted me to not leave it at that but to seek knowing God at a deeper level. It was a simple, organic process of pausing every time I came across a name or attribute of God as I read the Word and asking the Lord to reveal Himself to me personally, healing any wounds or experiences that would have warped my view. A decade later, I can tell you I know that God is loving, kind, generous, patience, righteous, forgiving, and good father. I also believe there is so much more for me to know about God. Would you say the same is true for you?
What we choose to believe about God’s identity – who He says He is – is the framework for how we live out our faith.
It is so foundational that I spend nearly a whole session teaching this principle in the life coach training course. My coaches need to be aware of their perspective about God as much as they need to be able to discern to their client’s perspective too.
Understanding the character of God and His inherent attributes influences how we see ourselves and the way we approach every situation.
It determines our response to temptations and trials, obstacles and conflicts. Do we feel defeated or filled with confidence that God is still at work?
It even influences how we respond to blessings. Do we take the credit or give God the glory?
Yet, how often do we really stop to think about who God is?
We spend most of our time focusing on ourselves and striving to define our own identity.
We allow our roles and responsibilities to determine our value. We allow our past to predict our future. We allow our pain to define our potential. We allow opinions and accomplishments and metrics to measure our worth. And what does that effort amount too? Nothing. Zilch. Nada.
We are a defeated, depressed, anxious, overwhelmed, distracted, stressed-out and downright joyless people who have created an idol of self in search of meaning.
Friend, there is another way to lead life. It starts by devoting ourselves to the study of His commands and reflecting on His ways (Psalm 119:15, NLT). That’s the only way to purposefully shift the focus off ourselves and onto who God really is.
Since the beginning of time, God’s people have done exactly what we’re doing – doubting His character, forsaking His commands, and turning from His best in search for something more. And yet God graciously responds to such rebellion with an urging to turn back to Him. To meditate on His Word and study His decrees. To love Him wholeheartedly and obey without delay (Deuteronomy 11:18-22).
This is the life He calls us to choose . . . a life that is shaped by the truth regarding His character and promises.
May this be the moment we choose life as we seek to encounter God afresh through the study of His Word, so that He may truly transform our thinking and living to align with His best.
Encounter God: 52 Scripture Memory Cards Plus Prayer Prompt Guide
Will you join me in memorizing the names of God and devoting time to praying according to the Scriptures?
You can grab the Encounter God: 52-week Scripture Memory & Prayer Scripture resource to personalize your journey. You can print out the cards in any size and use them as a screen saver on your phone too.
May this be the year we experience a fresh encounter with God through the study of His Word, so that He may truly transform our thinking and living to align with His best.
Encounter God: 52 Scripture CardsProduct on sale