Posts Tagged ‘God’

Knowing God

July 1, 2013

Knowing God
Ever have someone tell you that the Bible is God’s love letter to you, if you want to get to know Him “read the Word”? Then you look at the Book, with all it’s “books” and chapters and unfamiliar culture and think – “it’s too hard! I can never know God!”? If you are honest, you will confess that the Bible is not “easy reading”. To truly read and understand you must prayerfully study and use the tools of good biblical hermeneutics, cultural context, and language barriers…which most non-seminary people do not have. So, how did the early Christians do it? Just a short read in the book of Acts should reveal that they “knew God”. How does a busy working (or even stay-at-home) mom with small children find the time, let alone the energy, to “study” and know God.
I have good news for you: You cannot study to know God! You can study to know more about Him. Study to know more about how the Kingdom operates. Study to know more about how to relate to one another. But to know Him you must love Him, and to love Him you must experience Him. To experience Him you must perceive Him. “O taste and see that the Lord [our God] is good! Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) is the man who trusts and takes refuge in Him. (Psalms 34:8 AMP)”
If we compare our growing knowledge and perception of God to that of a developing child we know that the first “sense” that a newborn gets of his mother involves touch and taste directly involved with meeting basic needs: food, warmth, shelter, love, etc. This is how we come to El Shaddai (the many breasted one, the all sufficient one). We come as an infant: needy. Our fussing, rooting, and hunger for His essence all give Him such joy and pleasure. The interaction of needing and receiving from His abundance bonds us and makes us one with Him.
At first we know Him in the simplest of terms: “God is love…”
1 John 4:8 “He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love (ASV)”

Religion has tried to teach us that God loves us but we must (fill in the blank) in order to please Him, earn His blessings, etc. I encourage you to read the following passage only replace the word “charity” with “God” – meditate on the words and develop a picture of God based on His “love” quality:

1 Cor 13:4 “Love (God) is patient, love (God) is kind and is not jealous; love (God) does not brag and is not arrogant,
5 does not act unbecomingly; it (He) does not seek its (His) own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered,
6 does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth;
7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
8 Love (God) never fails; but if there are gifts of prophecy, they will be done away; if there are tongues, they will cease; if there is knowledge, it will be done away. (NASB)”

After spending some time meditating on the “love quality of God”, go back and study the words’ meaning. What is “patient”, “kind”, “jealous”, etc. All these give us insight into His character…but wait, you still have not tasted and seen. Now you must root for, look for, and hunger for these qualities being manifest in your life. You must “experience” His patience, kindness, etc. Look for them in your life, not just in your past experience but today, in this moment, can you find His love, patience, kindness, etc.?
I encourage you today, look for Him – not in a religious/pious sense, but as a child …
Psalms 42:1 “As the deer pants for streams of water, so I long for you, O God. (NLT)”

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Faceless Raisins

March 20, 2010

I felt it necessary to first of all introduce even the concept of a faceless raisin, and then give a brief introduction of myself so as to avoid a few misunderstandings which may arise from my blogs.
I chose the name “Faceless Raisin” because I, like many of God’s people have been exposed to the elements and “dried in the sun”. A parched a weary body of Christ (bunch of grapes), originally meant to be beautiful, find themselves in an ugly place, despised by the world they so desperately want to reach…more on that later. Faceless, because until now the Lord has held us in anonymity, and also because the time has come for Him to receive the glory and not us…may my “face” never become so big that it blocks out the rays of His love!
As for me, there are many ways in which I could describe myself: inward qualities, outward realities, present circumstances, and future hopes…aren’t we all a tapestry of complexity? I marvel at God’s ability to weave together even one life…but millions…even billions of trillions over time…amazing!
For those of you who believe we are a product of our experiences I was raised in 3 different Central American countries by missionary parents. I am bilingual and bi-cultural which produces a whole host of interesting personal and interpersonal opportunities. I am well acquainted with both para-church and church life: the good, the bad, and the ugly. I’ve worked in feeding programs, Bible schools, and miracle crusades. As far as the “Christian world” goes: I’ve been around.
Like Abraham, I’m still looking for that city “whose builder and maker is God”. I’ve had my fill of man-made, man-driven organizations and although I am neither judging nor mad at “church”, I’m not satisfied or fulfilled by it either. Part of me knows that I won’t be completely satisfied this side of heaven because (let’s face it) what I’m really longing for is God’s complete, physical reign on this earth…hmm Which leads me to divulging one of my inward “qualities”: I’m a hopeful realist. I say hopeful because in spite of all the failures and fop as committed by myself and others I still have hope that some day we may just get it right. Not perfect, just right!
In my blogs I will mostly be writing as I try to sort out and reconcile what I know in my heart to be true and right with both what I see acted out both in and around me as well as what the Word of God has to say about it all.
Although I believe that the way (or path) of God is simple so that even a fool could not err there by, I do not believe it is easy, and I certainly do not go for pat answers to the “hard questions”. Whether or not you believe in God, your journey here involves Him and our interactions with Him define us in ways we may not know until we reach “that city” or rather “it comes down to us”.
So, now, for the natural side. I used to think: “why bother? Natural stuff has no bearing on eternal things.” Boy was I wrong! You see, whether we like it or not we are 1/3 body 1/3 soul and 1/3 spirit…we are complicated beings created after God’s image and likeness…Man still looks on the outward appearance, and God still uses nature as a form of “first contact”, a touching point if you will. The journey to the soul and is through the outward senses, and it’s not a bad thing. This is one reason why we need people in our lives we can trust and connect with. So, here is a brief outline of my “outward” or natural life(I’ve tried to list my “facts” in as close to chronological order as possible. We are after all greatly shaped by time…but I digress): I am a wife – happily married to a husband who is absolutely amazing (I will tell our story in a separate blog)! I am a mother – together, my husband and I have three children (oldest girl, middle and youngest boys). I will talk about our opportunities and joys of child rearing in a separate blog also. I am a college student and a part time play ground aide/school librarian at a local Spanish Immersion elementary school (some of my more amusing musings will be about work). I am a minister, I guess I’ve always been a minister, but I’ll leave that topic for another day.
I’m learning to be impacting while remaining “nameless and faceless” in a godless world. I am a worshiper, intercessor, Bible student, and aspiring friend of God. I have enjoyed seasons of great happiness and felt the despair of great sorrow. I am His Faceless Raisin.