I don’t know if I’m the first to admit it but I can say I’ve never read or heard it voiced before. But if we were to honestly assess our views of God, we would discover that we don’t know Him at all. This particular line of thinking seems dangerous, but the implications of it really is not only invigorating but has had life changing impact on me that I never thought was possible.
Truth be told, I became comfortable with God. He was the guy who was watching over me. He was the friend I had. He was the awesome dude who gave me stuff and loved me, this I know. Now I’m not saying that these are inaccuracies. Each premise (and yes, each is a song that was in my childhood) has scripture to back it up. But, the truth is, that’s not enough. God is these things, but He is also so much more.
So, I have borrowed a phrase, and I am ashamed that I don’t know where it’s from and I’ve tried researching it again but to no avail. The phrase is simple but speaks volumes. I follow and worship “The God who Is”. Chew on that awhile. You see, honestly, each of us follow a God that we can perceive. And since we occupy a different point in time and space, we each view God in somewhat a different light; much like the blind men trying to describe an elephant. Each man described the part of the elephant that was in front of them. One said the elephant was like a snake. Another said the elephant was like a tree. And yet another said that the elephant was like a wiggly worm.
These blind men could go on arguing whose interpretation of the elephant was correct and yet they were all wrong because none of them embraced the thought that the elephant was all of them at once. Just as the blind men saw the elephant in their own image, so we tend to view God in our own image. We tend to accept the points about God in scripture that agree with our perception of Him and reject the parts that don’t jive with our view of the Almighty. Now, that’s the dangerous thinking. Because if there’s one thing I’ve learned in my faith journey, it is that my view and expectations of God are truly evil representations that are bent towards appeasing my own desires. The God who is isn’t concerned with my selfish desires. The God who is leads all people into His design and His plan. His will is perfect and also unrecognizable; because we can’t recognize perfection.
So, here I am in this point in time and space, discovering that I don’t have a clue who God is. I’m no longer comfortable with my perception of God. I’m always thriving, seeking, agreeing, disagreeing, arguing, crying, yelling, cussing at and reforming my perception of God. And this will go on until I stand in the Glory of the God who is and yet I will still be surprised at His infinite glory. God calls us to thrive, seek and find. He calls us to answer the door that He is knocking on. He calls us to sit and drink a beer with him or coffee if you prefer. But most importantly, He calls us to be in awe of His glory and then reflect that glory on to the rest of humanity, so that through the lumps of uninteresting clay though we are, His glory will be cascaded out across the horizon and all who seek it will find it through us.
2 Corinthians 4:7-9 “But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed;”