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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The glacier of God

Learning to walk with God is tough.

I can't tell you what it feels like to have walked with God all my life since 1. if I assume that I live an average length of time, I am not even halfway there and 2. I haven't walked deeply enough with God for a consistent amount of time.

I remember hearing John Piper say on numerous occasions, that the greatest act of love that God can do for us, is to not withhold Himself from us, but to allow us to know and commune with Him. I've always liked the thought of it, but it was hard for me to experience it regularly. I like to describe my relationship with God in the past as serious, but not intimate. I would also take my relationship with God seriously, and I have certainly walked a long time with God, but the depth of my relationship with Him isn't nearly as intimate as many of the human relationships I have. It has always been easier to rely on people for support, encouragement, and companionship than anything else. I've seen some people get lost in video games for hours and days and weeks on end, others I've seen find consolation in their favorite sports, and others in their own respective "stress relievers." It all boils down to where we can pass time in a way that is pleasing to us. Of course, now that we are older, most people have established careers which they either love or hate and have decided to exchange a higher level of stress for a higher amount of money. This isn't a problem as long as your entire identity falls into your work.

But walking consistently and deeply with God is a completely different thing. What I can see is that God is constantly attempting to reveal His nature and character in our lives through whatever means possible. This is for the simple fact that He wants to bless us with a knowledge of Him that truly surpasses all wealth and treasures of the earth. If you talk to people who have known God deeply for a long period of time, they will gladly say that nothing compares: no amount of money would they exchange, all the luxuries the world can offer pales in comparison, the best job in the world becomes inadequate in producing the same level of joy, and having the hottest and most considerate man or woman in your life becomes a side dish to the main course of knowing God intimately. Or so this is what I hear.

The truth is, my faith has always been one where I go to God for just enough time that I charge my "battery" about 10% so I can go ahead of God until I run out of juice. Then, when I'm depleted, lonely, and tired, I just wait for God to recharge me until I have just enough energy to run ahead of Him again. This cycle has kept me from experiencing each step with God and has only allowed me to experience God in my retreats away from the world - partially why I am doing this 62 day project.

I don't think I've walked this consistently with God in a long time. Everyday, I've been able to go before God and just enjoy my time with Him. The more I do this, the more I am beginning to experience how God is intricately involved in our lives. I heard so many sermons in the past going over the various names of God in the Bible, names like God is provider, healer, master, helper, friend, king, shepherd, protector, etc. However, when I look through my walk over the years, I've known God as a minimal healer, a minimal protector, a minimal friend, a minimal master, a minimal provider, and so on and so forth. I never took the tip of the iceberg that was apparent to me and dove into the water to realize how massive the glacier was. Instead, I just took the little He gave me and then walked away until it melted to go back and get another tip that had surfaced. I never jumped in the water because I never trusted that what God really just wanted wasn't my works or my good deeds, but was to just hang in the perfect waters with Him, in Him. When we soak in the waters of God, what I notice is that it permeates through all of our being. Little by little, the waters work to heal our wounds, to protect us from harm, to provide us with nourishment, to surround us with love, and to meet all of our needs in abundance. All we need to do is jump in and stay in.

It's hard to see God in hard circumstances. We have so many needs and so many fears, so many frustrations and so much uncertainty in our lives that we sort of get lost in our own situations. But these are the times we have to push for God the most. God listens to prayers so just sit with Him, calm your heart, and pray. God speaks to us through His Word, so open the Bible, remove all distractions, and see what God has in store for you. As I continue to walk with God, I am beginning to see more and more that the glacier beneath the tip of the iceberg is big and it is good. There is no better option than God.

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