Saturday, November 12, 2011

Living in the Reality of God

Our belief of how the world works dictates how we live. We live our lives in a way that we think will most benefit our desires in the world as we see it. Whether it is true of not, this is our reality, so we live as if it is true.

For example, if we have been impacted by divorce, adultery, or a broken heart then we might believe that committed love is a myth. If so, we live for the moment, pursuing non-committed counterfeit romance protecting ourselves from the pain that might result if we believe there could be a truly meaningful love relationship with another person.

Others believe that value is something I have to earn for myself. So I build a reputation, hide my faults, slander others, and give all my energies to make myself look better while making others look worse.

Others believe that no one can be trusted so they won’t be authentic with others, they constantly protect their hearts, possessions, and reputations, not letting anyone get close for fear they will be hurt or taken advantage of. They suspect the worst of everyone and prejudge their actions as an attack because surely their motives are not pure.

All of our lives are impacted by how we think the world works. The problem comes when our view of the world is not true. The only One who knows the true reality of our world is the One who created it and us. This is the reality of God. This a perspective of the world that is based on the God of the Bible. In page after page of the Bible we begin to learn how the world really works. 

From God’s Word we gain a true understanding of what is truly valuable, what is truly sinful, what really matters, and what really doesn’t. How to respond to pain, suffering, disappointment, and brokenness. How to relate to God and our fellow man. It is a perspective that apart from God we have no access to. He has come into our world to show us the true way of life.

In the Bible our clearest picture of the Reality of God is seen in the life of Jesus Christ. The contrast is so evident when we look at how Christ lived and how we live. He lived in the Reality of God. The unseen was as real as the seen and at times even more so. When you look at the stories of Christ it was as if He was playing by different rules, reading from a different script, or coming from a different world that we can’t relate to. He rested, we worry. He gave, we horde. He was bold, we fear. He forgave, we hate. He pleased the Father, we please the world around us. He spoke with authority, we apologize for truth. He lived in the reality of God, the only true reality and it impacted everything that He said and did. 

Jesus was familiar with the true realities of this world on both the natural and the supernatural levels. He was fully God and fully man. He had created this world and all the spiritual and natural laws that govern it. He had also created mankind in His image. If anyone knows how life is best lived in this world it has to be Jesus.

Are we willing to believe the truth. It comes down to do we really believe that a sovereign, all-knowing, all-loving, all-powerful, ever-present God truly exists. Do we believe what He has told us in His Word. To the extent that we truly believe this will be the extent to which we live in the true reality, the "Reality of God." We can't live in it if we don't believe in it, and we can't believe in it if we have never heard about it.

As we believe it will affect our actions and even our emotions. For example look at Psalm 46:1-3, “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear.” Once they believed that they were safe in the reality of God they no longer had any reason to fear. But they had to believe before they experienced the change.

Imagine a believer who has fully wagered all to believe in the true reality of God. Priorities Change. Purpose changes. Desires Change. Emotions Change. Everything changes. He or She is no longer from this world. They are now citizens of heaven who are living in a foreign land. Their life is now built on a foundation that they cannot lose. 

This living in the “Reality of God” is not only seen in the life of Jesus. We see it throughout scripture. We also see it in church history in the lives of Jan Huss and John Wycliffe who were put to death for translating the Bible into their people’s language. We see it in the life of missionaries like Hudson Taylor who left the comfort of their home countries to live in poverty in China so he could share the riches of the Gospel. We see it in the death of Jim Eliot who was martyred in 1956 while sharing Christ with the Waodani people of Ecuador.

All of these and countless others throughout scripture and church history saw the "real world". We know this by the way that they lived. They saw the world in a different way than any of the people around them.

As we look back through scriptures and church history we see time and again that the pathway into the "Reality of God" always was characterized by a faith that chose to surrender all and believe. 

We only begin to recognize and live in the true "Reality of God" when we begin to understand and believe the promises of God, the commands of God, and the spiritual realities that we are told about in the Bible.
God has passed on to us clear descriptions of the true reality of the world that we live in. As we begin to believe in His promises, His provisions, and His commands we will find ourselves right in the center of the life we were created for. Life in the Reality of God. Life under His protection, provision, and blessing.

What is keeping you from experiencing the Reality of God in your life?
What areas of your life are you guilty of not believing and obeying God's will?
What areas of your life need more of God's perspective? (dating, your calling, finances, worry, prayer, leading your people, etc.)
What promises of God do you need to believe?
What commands of God do you need to obey?
What do you need to surrender to God's Lordship?

Pray for faith and get in God's Word. Live like His promises are true and His commands are best. It will change everything. An abundant life focused on eternity is waiting.

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