Right In Our Own Eyes

When we feel strongly that something’s right or wrong, how do we know we’re right? Do we just presume so, based on how strongly we feel?

HelixNebula
Helix “God’s Eye” Nebula

If we’re not consciously referencing God’s standard of right and wrong as we make moral judgments … aren’t we just making up our own? (Pr 21:2)

But isn’t God the only One Who has the right to do this? Aren’t we constantly usurping that right? Trying to put ourselves on the throne instead of God? But isn’t this Satan’s way? (Is 14:13-14)

God’s definition of sin is Torah. (1Jn 3:4) Are we hiding it in our hearts and asking Him to conform us to it? If not, what are we doing?

When God judges the world, I expect He’s going to use His own definition of sin, not ours. Wouldn’t it be tragic to face the God of Heaven and be so completely wrong about absolutely everything? (Pr 30:12) When He’s made His laws so accessible to us? What will be our defense? (Ro 3:19)

Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.(Mt 7:7-8)

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My Course

Why am I here? Alive on this earth? It’s a question we all ask; rooted in our nature. We’re driven to find purpose and meaning, but what does this mean – for life to have meaning?

Claustral Canyon, Blue Mountains, Australia
Claustral Canyon, Blue Mountains, Australia

If no one ever acknowledges my life, considers how I’ve lived or what I’ve done, I have no purpose. Having meaning implies being evaluated: judged.* But by whom?

In the end, Man can’t give me meaning; I can’t give myself or others purpose. Living just to please others is empty. (Ga 1:10)

Only the One Who made me gives me purpose; Jehovah designs and creates each of us for a reason, and this defines our purpose. In Him I find my race, my course. (2Ti 4:7-8)

God gives each of us unique gifts, dispositions and opportunities (1Co 12:8-11) so that we can fulfill God’s unique purpose in creating us. It’s in leveraging my own unique design to serve and honor God the best I know how that I discover my course and run my race. (Ro 12:6-8)

I can’t spend my life trying to exercise other people’s gifts; I’m not designed to do everything for God. (Jn 21:22) What I do best is where I fit in His kingdom; it’s where I belong, for His glory. (Re 3:12)

In the end, only one thing matters: hearing God say, “Well done.” (Mt 25:23)

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*See first comment below

Your Father Knows

In giving perspective in prayer, Yeshua grounds us in the fact that we aren’t informing God of anything: He already knows what we need. (Mt 6:7-8) So it isn’t the form or quantity of our prayers that matters; the key is in our motivation. (Ja 4:3) Prayer is God inviting us into His work. (Ep 1:11)

Chapada dos Veadeiros National Park, Brazil
Chapada dos Veadeiros National Park, Brazil

Given this, it really makes no sense to recite prayers unless our hearts find honest, sincere expression in them. Just think how anyone else would feel if we scripted conversation like that!

Similarly, neither does praying in tongues, apart from our understanding and will, make any sense — using our bodies as passive conduits rather than expressing our hearts. (1Co 14:14-15)

To pray apart from thoughtful passion is to think wrongly of God, that He’s disinterested in our hearts, that He’d rather partition and fragment us than engage intimately with our entire being. (1Jn 5:14-15) It treats Him more like a vending machine than a loving father, like a robot responding to command stimuli, regardless of motive or source. It’s a pagan view of God.

While God delights in engaging us in His work and transforming us through prayer, He’s not limited by our ability to pray, or even our lack of prayer. (Da 4:35b) He’s actually the One moving in us to pray according to His good pleasure (Php 2:13); and when we don’t pray like we should, or don’t know how to, He is praying for us Himself according to His own will. (Ro 8:26-27)

So let’s pray like we breathe … organically, intrinsically, continuously (Ro 12:12) … telling Him everything, moving in and through Him with every pulse of our being. (Ep 4:6) Dial Him first thing in the morning, and never hang up.

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Let Us Draw Near

Jehovah, being central in all things (Ro 11:36), calls us to Himself. But most of us don’t seek after God as He is (Ps 53:2-3); we’re content with shallow sentiment and ritual when our hearts are far away. (Mt 15:8)

Mt Ararat, Turkey

It’s tempting to deceive ourselves into thinking we’re close to Him (Ja 1:26), imagining a god we can be fond of (Ro 1:21), as if He were a doting grandpa or a cute puppy … when in reality He’s a consuming fire (He 12:28-29); it’s an awesome thing to fall into His hands. (He 10:31)

Being close to God is not about feeling fond of Him; it’s not in sentimentality. “Who shall ascend into the hill of the LORD? or who shall stand in his holy place? He that hath clean hands, and a pure heart; who hath not lifted up his soul unto vanity, nor sworn deceitfully.” (Ps 24:3-4) If we are not pursuing holiness as a manner of life, we’re nowhere near God. (1Jn 3:10)

Let’s draw near to God! (He 10:22) Value what He values; love what He loves and hate what He hates. (Mt 16:23) Pursue truth (2Th 2:10)seek His face (Ps 27:8) and keep His commandments. (Jn 14:21) Serve Him with fear … and rejoice with trembling (Ps 2:11), humbly thanking Him for everything. (Ep 5:20)

Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. Be afflicted, and mourn, and weep: let your laughter be turned to mourning, and your joy to heaviness. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.(Ja 4:8-10)

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Seek My Face

God commands us to seek His face. “When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek.” (Ps 27:8) What does this mean, and how do we do it?

Phoenix Nebula

Seeking God’s face is the seeking of God Himself: it is laying down our self to seek Another, the heart of a greater Self. It is connecting relationally with God, abiding in Him, heart to heart, abandoning at our core all that’s not of God. (Ps 73:25)

When we look into another’s face, when eyes meet eyes, two souls meet in a way that’s not physical. There is a relational connecting, a vulnerability, a seeing that is deeply intimate.

As we behold God’s face He transforms us (2Co 3:18), to deliver us from the shame of Eden, that shrinking, that hiding that springs from the shame of sin. (Ge 3:10) God frees us of the dominion of sin, and thus from shame (Ps 119:6), so that we may look into each other, and into Him, with confidence and joy. (1Jn 2:28) This is our destiny. (1Co 13:12)

Are we content with anything besides God Himself? (Ps 42:2) Have we abandoned self-love in order to seek His face? (Jn 12:25) Are we, with every fiber of our being, distilling every place to this one? (Ps 42:1)

Are we willing to live anywhere else? Pursue anything else? (Ga 5:24) Be anything else? Not if we are children of God. (Php 3:18-20)

With all our finding then let’s find the face of God; let’s continually behold Him (Ps 27:4), that we may both know Him (Jn 17:3) and be known by Him. (Mt 7:23) And in that great and final Day when God’s face is finally unveiled (Re 20:11), destroying all that can be destroyed (He 12:27), we will be at home. (Da 12:2-3)

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