(ECHO Project devotion – January 14)
“What comes to our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.” ~ Tozer
What would you say is the most important thing about you? Your family? Your job? Your talents? Your faith? Obviously we have a lot of things important to us. And I think as Christians, we would probably answer that question by saying that our faith informs every other aspect of our lives, and that’s true.
But if you think about it, the statement above, taken from A.W. Tozer’s excellent Knowledge of the Holy (which I’m reading right now), hits on an even deeper truth. Whatever your view of God, whether good or bad, big or small, good or bad, informs your faith. This in turn informs the rest of your life.
I hate to break it to you, but each of us has a view of God that is a little warped. We are humans and we are flawed. Even with the best of intentions, we miss the mark a bit.
A lot of this stems from childhood. If we had strict parents who dealt with us harshly, we might look at God as some kind of cruel judge waiting to punish us. If we grew up with parents who caved into our every whim, we might simply look at God through the lens of “what’s in it for me?” And I hate to say it, but anyone who grew up in the West has injected a little bit of Santa Claus into their faith, expecting God to give us what we want.
These are just a few of the different ways we limit our view of God. If you have a limiting view of God, your entire life will be limited.
It doesn’t have to be that way. In fact, God wants you to live that kind of “life to the full” that Jesus talks about in John 10:10. Commit to him that you are going to spend some time focusing on his attributes. Start today. Read the Bible and take note of how he has revealed himself. Align your heart to his through personal and corporate worship. Pray and ask him to reveal himself to you.
Many great authors have written about the attributes of God. A.W. Tozer is one for sure, but you can’t go wrong with J.I. Packer’s Knowing God, Chip Ingram’s God as He Longs for You to See Him, or Dan DeHaan’s The God You Can Know. If you feel so led, read one of these books with a hungry mind and an open heart.
Make a commitment that this year you are going to get to know God for who he truly is. After all, it’s the most important thing about you.