God wants to be known. All over scripture he went to great lengths to make people aware of who he was. In the Old Testament, a variation of the phrase: “Then they will know that I am the Lord,” is used 88 times. 65 times in Ezekiel alone. Most of the time it was used either immediately before or immediately after God did something big – for which only He could receive credit. He clearly delighted in evidencing himself.
It took a while for it to finally occur to me that perhaps it was bigger than just prestige. I mean, God is GOD — he can seek out glory and honor all he wants to! In terms of deserving credit, let’s be real…he qualifies. But there’s so much more! If it is true that our applause, and our acknowledgement of his greatness does nothing to add to or take away from his glory, then why does he care? Because unlike most of us, when He is known, we benefit. It is a gift. In all honesty, if 99.99% of the world dies without ever having known us, they’re probably going to be ok…probably. If any one of us dies without knowing God… big trouble. BIG trouble. So out of His great love for us, he makes himself known. He pursues us.
“Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.” – Revelation 3:20
So let’s say you know Him. Do you trust him?
If you’re not so sure you trust what he has for you or is asking of you, it’s possible you don’t know Him well enough yet. It might be wise to ask yourself how you qualify his character. Sit down and get brutally honest about who you believe Him to be and what you honestly expect from him if you were to trust him with your life. And then ask yourself this question: Is your perception accurate?
The more we get to know God, the more clearly we see His character and trust his intentions. He wired us for purpose, community, love… super fulfilling aches that we have are meant to be recognized in his plan for us. The more fully we know Him, trust Him, and listen to Him, the better our lives will be.
“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” – James 1:17
Please know that this isn’t a superficial call to “let God in so your life can be full of superficial blessings” kind of a post. Those perspectives make me a little crazy. Angry even. Because it’s belittling and wimpy, and honestly super short-sighted. Tough stuff still happens to Christians. And it doesn’t mean that God is not wildly in love with them, or that they are making bad decisions. God might chose to use someone in the midst of their grief. He might chose to develop character by refining through fire or rebuilding a broken person; but he always redeems obedience, and he always gives gifts with an eternal perspective. Yes, he gives good gifts, and knowing and obeying Him will always mean great things – just don’t lose hope when the purpose for pain isn’t clear.
When God is known, we benefit. He is about his glory because he is about us. I have never been so alive as when I have been steadfast in my pursuit of knowing Him. It’s a consistent promise we all have the option to take hold of.
“I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full” – John 10:10
Here’s the thing – we have an option. God does not force us to know Him – or listen to Him. We have a choice in the matter. When we reject God or ignore what he has said to us, well, truth gets tough to decipher. End result? Sin. “An immoral act considered to be a transgression against divine law.” Let’s pause for a moment and just be frank – sin can be pretty fun. Even satisfying – at least for a while. So what’s the story there? Where is the disconnect? That’s next guys: Why Sin is Fun.