Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Knowing the heart of God

“God is too wise to be mistaken, and too good to be unkind. When we cannot trace His hand, we can always trust His heart.” Charles Spurgeon

I read this quote in a comment posted on my dear friend's blog in response to her battle with breast cancer. I have chewed on it for days now asking myself, "Do I know the heart of God?" Knowing God is the root system of my salvation and any growth I will experience in my Christian life depends on it. I am realizing how shallow and hungry and thirsty my roots are.

Growing up I was saturated with teachings about who God is as I sat in church twice on Sunday and every Wednesday night. I remember the primary message was constantly directed to sinners in the hands of an angry God. Years of this picture of God as a judge who would never be satisfied instead of a forgiving Heavenly Father became a stumbling block in my faith. I now realize to truly be saved by grace through faith alone you HAVE to know who God really is. Yes, His anger with our sin and our deserved judgment is a critical part of His nature but never when painted without the focus being on the redeeming love offered in the gift of His Son, Christ Jesus.

In J.I. Packer's book Knowing God he writes, "A study of the nature and character of God is the most practical project anyone can engage in. Knowing about God is crucially important for the living of our lives...We are cruel to ourselves if we try to live in the world without knowing about the God whose world it is and who runs it. The world becomes a strange, mad, painful place, and life disappointing and unpleasant business for those who do not know about God. Disregard the study of God and you sentence yourself to stumble and blunder through life blindfolded, as it were, with no sense of direction and no understanding of what surrounds you. This way you can waste your life and lose your soul."

I can look back in my life, even recently, and see how my distorted view of God made everything unclear. As I am in the Word and my eyes are opened to the person and work of Christ, the Holy Spirit, and God, my loving Father, I am amazed at how different my perspective is becoming.

Thank You for showing me more of Your heart as I seek You in Your Word. Help my knowledge of You to grow deeper and stronger each day until I see You face to face.

This Is Our God - Chris Tomlin featuring David Crowder

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