Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Poor Assumptions we make as Christians

I was reading this morning in A Hunger for God and a chapter from last month just keeps coming back to me regarding the  Fasting over the course of History (Chapter 5). There were two assumptions Piper brought up that I confess I am very guilty of assuming. I keep coming back to these thoughts, so I thought I'd write them out so I can remember them.

Assumption 1. "It is a mistake to think that God's way with one of his children will be his way with all."
I found this statement refreshing and humbling. How many times have I shared how God spoke into my life and expected Him to work the same way with my husband or children or friend? Or I'd give a formula that worked in my own life to grow deeper and expected it to work with others instead of praying for that person to discover their own methodology which would grow true intimacy?   I also found this very intimate, that God and I have a special language that only I can hear. This powerful statement removes rules and checklists when desiring more of God.

Assumption 2. " Another mistake we can make as Christians in admiring the work of God ... is to think that God's blessing implies his approval of their behavior and doctrine."
Piper goes on to describe the life of Apollos in the New Testament and how Aquila and Priscilla had to set him straight on his teaching even thought God was blessing the church and ministry. He also referenced Romans 2:4 - " Do you not know that God's kindness and forbearance and patience are meant to lead you to repentance."

I've been meditating on this truth for the last few weeks and it keeps coming back. So often times I hear Christians say that the Lord blessed such and such decisions so God must agree with my life. This verse in Romans reminds me that the choices in our family need to be made cautiously and humble before the Lord and a blessing or open door from God isn't necessarily an approval by God. Piper goes on to talk about the Reformation and the false doctrine by prominent pastors of the day who grew churches and  were used to save souls yet their own theology was not biblical. I rested in Exodus 33:19 which states " I will be gracious to whom I am gracious, and will show compassion on whom  I will show compassion."

I love and tremble that my God does not fit into a box and that the Word of God is the plumb-line we must use to deepen our intimacy with Him. God longs for a deep and personal relationship and that takes intentionality from me to give up the things of this life to grow closer to the Lord. What I feel Jesus calling me towards is much harder than a formula, its time and prayerful choices and the giving up of myself. Most days I'd rather resort to a checklist instead of a faith walk.

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