Does God Want Us to Suffer?

suffering1

A question a lot of Christians ask is, “Does God want us to suffer?” or, “Does God want me to go through this?” The test can be anything, whether a disease, a financial storm, a relationship trial, anything that pins us against the wall or brings about suffering. The question is, “Is it God’s will that I suffer?” I want to attempt to answer this today.

First of all, what does God want for us? If you look to the Scriptures, God doesn’t say He wants us to suffer. He says that He wishes that we prosper and be in good health. So why are we saying that it’s God’s will that we suffer?

It’s a question a lot get stumped on, but I’ll try to give an answer and give you my opinions on the subject. What I first want to point out is that no where does God say he wants us to go through trials. Tests and trails are what we need to go through to grow and learn, because of our fallen nature, we’re constantly pulled by sin. One thing I do believe is that tests and trials are not of God; they are either from our sin, or the enemy. God doesn’t place trials upon us, but He also doesn’t take them away.

If you look at it this way, it might help. Trials are a form of discipline, a means of teaching us and guiding us in the right direction. When I was little we used to have a small poodle, and we’d have its water bowl on the floor. Well I used to dip my hands in that bowl and splash until there wasn’t any water left. As you can imagine, discipline had to be given to teach me that what I was doing was wrong. Discipline is an obligation. An action that must be done to guide us in our ways. But at no point does a father ever enjoy it. A father never wants to discipline his child, but he knows it must be done. So God doesn’t want us to go through trials, but He sometimes has to allow the enemy to place them on us to teach us, or to guide us.

What we go through isn’t what God wants for us. He wants us to lean and depend on Him. He wants us to stand on His promises, and above all, He wants us to fight. We need fighters, Christians who will stand on God’s promises, and that’s what trials teach us. To depend upon God’s Word and what He’s promised; and in the end, they will always make us stronger.

So in the end, I hope this gives you some encouragement as you battle your own trials. Remember, we all go through them, but only few of us take what God gives us during those trials, and that is the promise of victory.

The Lord’s Prayer: Our Daily Need

Right, we’re back with the Lord’s prayer. So far we’ve gone through “Out Father, who art in Heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven.” Next up is, “Give us this day, our daily bread.” Before I go on, lets look at today’s culture. We’re all striving to have wealth. We’re striving for riches, yet Jesus said to pray for our daily bread? Let me explain.

So first, let me ask a question: why doesn’t He given us our needs for the future? Because we’re looking at the wrong needs. Remember Jesus in the desert, when He was being tempted by the devil? Satan told Jesus to turn the stone into bread, yet Jesus said, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.” Jesus knew His need wasn’t in the bread. He knew His need wasn’t in the material things, but in God.

So to answer the previous question, why doesn’t God give us what we need for the future? One: because we’ve already got our needs in Him, and two: our need for Him wouldn’t be needed. When we have our needs covered, for now and the future, what would we need God for? Our eyes will depart from Him, and look upon the material needs which we all think is what we need to live.

We survive on material needs, but we live in the dependency and grace of God.

If we had all material needs supplied, we’d most likely forget about the one who created them, but if we became poor, we’d be tempted to do things we wouldn’t want to do. God always gives us what we need for the day, and when we have our need, and our want, completely set on Him, He’ll satisfy in every way.

So when praying, don’t ask God for material needs, ask for more of Him. “Seek first the Kingdom of God and all these things will be added unto you.” Jesus is the bread of life, and when all things were created by Him and for Him, what more could we want?

Cool Hand Luke: Of Man, album Review

cool-hand-luke-of-man

Rarely does an album move me to tears. This is one of those albums. The final album from Cool Hand Luke, Of Man, recounts the last days of Jesus Christ, often times in stunning detail. It’s told from a different perspective on each song, from Jesus Himself, the Disciples, Mary, and the Guards. From that fact alone, this is an album unlike any other.

The album begins with Hoshana (Greek for Hosanna) and is an instrumental that pictures Jesus coming in Jerusalem on the donkey. Good-bye for now and the Last Supper are both sung from Jesus’ perspective, and both brought me to tears. When the Last Supper came on, my eyes were running, and when it came to the amazing end of that song, I broke down, and it was only the fourth song through.

The musical camera then pans to Judas and goes through his thoughts, then in the sixth song, to Jesus’ perspective again in the Garden of Gethsemane.

His Eyes is told from John’s perspective as he watches Jesus get beaten and crucified, and is the most intense of the record.

The Confusion is told from Peter’s point of view, and the remaining songs go from Mary, to the Guards, and then to Jesus getting ready to leave earth. It’s definitely a unique way to tell the story, and it’s done flawlessly.

Now I want to talk about the music itself. Like I said before, this is an album unlike any other. It’s meant to be played as a whole. It’s a musical film, similar in intensity to the Passion of the Christ. And it’s just as difficult to listen to. For the most part the album has a dark, somber atmosphere, with only a piano and soft guitar in most of the songs. This depressing style might turn some off. If you’re one who likes their music jumpy and joyful, this is definitely not the album for you. It’s a far cry from the worship chorus sung in church, yet it’s just as powerful, if not even more.

The album gets darker until it reaches its climax with His Eyes. As I said before, it’s told from John’s perspective as he watches Christ being crucified. It begins soft and somber, slowly building in intensity, describing the events from when they bound Jesus, to the crucifixion, and sometimes it can get graphic. “They struck His face, no, that’s too poetic, they punched Him until their fringes were covered in blood.” The song continues to build until it reaches an almost heavy metal climax, with pain filled screaming as the nails are driven through. It’s effective and shocking as you never expect it. If you can make it to the end of this song, well done. If you can make it without tearing up, I don’t know what to say. It then moves into the Burial, a soft instrumental to serve as a relief from the emotional barrage of the previous track.

From here on the album slowly becomes more hopeful, while still wallowing in doubt from Peter (the Confusion of Simon Peter) to Mary mourning her son’s death (I Remember) to the shock of the guards when the stone was rolled away (Two Versions), and then ends on the extremely hopeful note (Not the End, Not the End). Each song is a beautiful masterpiece that gets better each time. The only thing I could point out was that there could have been a bit more diversity, since each song is a slow piano ballad. But that’s not a complaint. For those who like faster, harder music, this record could become tedious to listen to, and might bore others. It’s not a record to put on in the background or just for casual listening, this is an album to meditate on and dig into.

Overall, I haven’t encountered an album so complete and moving in a long time. From everything, even to the cover, is perfect and done well. Each song compliments the scene perfectly, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. With all of this, I give this album a five out of five. It’s a must listen for any Christian, even if you only do it once. You won’t regret it.

5/5

And if all that wasn’t good enough, it’s available for free from the amazing website, Noisetrade. Here’s the link: Noisetrade: Cool Hand Luke, Of Man, Free Download.

 

Fathers and Porn Stars

If there is one temptation, one addiction that has run rampant in the Christian community, it’s pornography. It’s a tragic trap most men fall into, and it’s tearing us apart. I felt led to write this post since its a huge problem most everyone faces. I’ll show you, not only the obvious problems, but what the Lord sees as well.

Before I go on, I want to note that this post is a little more on the mature side than the others. So younger readers might want to pass on.

So, first I want to talk about the sin of pornography and lust itself. It began in Eden, and as we all know, Adam and Eve were naked. Before the fall, we were innocent, and so we never looked at each other as a thing to use, but as a beautiful creation. A child of God. Nudity wasn’t seen as a means of pleasure. It reflected God’s glory. But as soon as the fall, it no longer reflected God’s glory, and so it was seen as shameful. The sin here is that nudity became a source of pleasure. A selfish fulfilment of the flesh that cares for only itself. We began to lust, and that’s when the beauty that God created for His glory became corrupted.

And now we get to the issue of pornography, thousands of years after the fall. Porn is meant to satisfy your lusts and fleshly desires, and it rarely, if ever puts women in the place God intended for them. It turns them into things, tools we use to satisfy ourselves. Instead of looking at a woman as a human being, with feelings, dreams, thoughts, and emotions, they become an image on a screen that’s nothing more than an object to use for our own pleasure.

Which brings me to the first part of the post’s title: Fathers. As a teenager turning eighteen in the beginning of October, I know the time for marriage is close. Not to say I will definitely get married in the next year or so, but it’s possible. And that led me to think of my future children, and what lives I would want for them.

There’s a small joke my mom and I thought of, since I probably won’t be going to university, nor do I even know for certain what I’m going to do (except of course writing),  people can push you. When people push the subject I say, “Well, I’m thinking of becoming a stripper!” No, I’m not going to become a stripper, but the truth is there are people who do take off their clothes for other’s entertainment. And I think, “What if my son wants to be a stripper?” or, “What if my daughter decides to become a porn star?” These questions fill me with fear, because living in a world that’s getting more focused on sex each day, I’m afraid that they’ll decide to take a job that requires them to be used sexually.

Though I’m not yet a father, I know there was never a father who wished their daughter would grow to become a porn star.

When I have children, I’ll do everything I can to protect them. I’ll teach them the ways of the Lord, fill them with the Gospel, love them unconditionally, treasure them, esteem them, but I know one day I’ll have to let them go out into the world. Even though I don’t have a daughter, I’m afraid she’ll get hurt by some guy who abuses her, and only loves her because of what she can give him.

Guys, I want you to realize this. Every girl, every woman who reveals herself to you, is some father’s little girl. They are God’s little girls. And I know as I would want my children safe, I know God wants His children to be safe in His arms.

Guys, I know you want to feel as though you’re worth something, to feel loved, but if you use a person to make you feel that way, you’re using someone’s daughter, or for women, someone’s son. People can never give you worth, only Christ can, and if you try to find worth in a person, you’ll end up hurting her/him, and God. We all fear rejection, more than anything in this life, and it can lead us to do things that hurt others. That’s the truth.

It’s time we love like the Christ of the Bible loved. Learn from the girls who have gone through the Hell of pornography. Learn from those who have suffered from trafficking and sex slavery. Sex doesn’t save you! It’s hurts, not only yourself, but others as well. If only we can learn to give instead of take.

There’s a song from the Christian metal band, Emery, called a Sin To Hold On To, and it’s about avoiding the temptation of fornication. The chorus goes, “If we could be the ones to hold on (to stay strong), then maybe we can make a difference in somebody’s life.”

So next time you stare at the mouse sitting on that porn site link, remember that these are God’s children. These are some father’s daughters, and lets look away. A relationship between man and woman is a precious gift God has given us, let’s not abuse it.

Lets pray that men, and women, will stop using each other for their own fulfilment, and let’s learn to give instead of take. “Lord, we pray that you would come and fill us with an anguish and a love for those around us. Lord, help us to love the way you did. Help us to treat those the same way you treated them. Give us life to give back to others. Give us more of you, in Jesus name, Amen.”

Here’s a video from Christian speaker Levi the Poet about the dangers of pornography: Levi the Poet, Pretty in Pornography. Warning: it’s only for mature audiences.

The Lord’s Prayer: Surrendering to His Will

In the previous post on the Lord’s Prayer series, I talked about letting go of our own kingdoms, our goals, our visions, and letting Christ’s kingdom enter our hearts, and spread out to those around us. Today I’m going to look at the part of the prayer that says, “Thy will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven.”

I think we when pray this, we sort of go over it without much thought as to what we’re actually saying. “Your will be done.” That means we’re giving God everything. After giving the Lord our kingdom, our lives, we now need to follow Him, and Christianity is a journey unlike any other. It has its times of trial, and times of joy and victory, but the one thing the Christian walk is not is easy.

When I pray this, I think of Jesus in the garden of Gethsemane, sweating blood, praying, “Father, if it is possible, take this cup from me, but not my will, but yours be done.” If gives me great encouragement to know that even Jesus struggled to submit to the will of God.

You see, God’s will sometimes requires us to do things we may not want to do, and sadly some Christians aren’t ready to follow God no matter where He takes them.  They say, “I’ll follow you anywhere Lord,” and then bail out when the Lord tells them to do something that requires some suffering. For example, Peter when he denied Christ three times.

I want to give you an encouragement today. In the prayer, after we pray, “Thy will be done,” it then goes on to say, “on earth as it is in Heaven.” Wow, lets stop right there. If Jesus said that God wills for earth to be as Heaven, then it must be worth it! Heaven is the place where every good thing rests. Love, joy, satisfaction, peace, fulfillment, pleasure, everything good. “On earth, as it is in Heaven.”

So what is God’s will? That’s another question people ask, yet the answer is right before their eyes. God’s will is to bring Heaven to earth. In Heaven, everything is Christ, and everything is good, that’s what God’s will is; that we might allow Christ to consume every part of our lives, including the way we speak, the things we do, and the way we treat others. It’s hard to submit to God’s will because a lot of times we don’t want to do that. We don’t want to love every person we see. Some people are just unlovable.

But I see a different story when I see the cross.

So to go out today, I encourage you to make the decision (along with myself) to submit to the will of God. It may be hard, but it’s more than worth it in the end to see those pearly gates open.

When They Don’t Want God

What do you do when people don’t want God? That’s a question a lot can’t answer, and it’s certainly been on my mind these last few days. Last night I was reading an article about a Satanic cult movement that’s been growing in popularity, and a lot of priests are outraged. It’s a conference that includes reverse-exorcisms and a ritual that exorcises the Holy Spirit from the person to allow a devil to control. It sounds like the plot to a horror story, yet it’s happening right now!

The question comes in when you realize people want to take part in these practices, and it’s not just in this cult movement, but in anything having to do with glorifying the occult. Either these people want the thrill (there are a million better ways for that) or they want the devil in their lives. I’m inclined to go for the latter, and it’s a sad truth. Realize Christians, some actually want Satan in their lives. Can you imagine that? Our enemy as someone’s god.

So what can we do about it? What do we do when someone doesn’t want God? Should we speak against it? Should we be going up to those doors, holding up signs, and yelling for it to stop? The truth is, we can scream and yell all we want, it’s not going to stop. Why? Because of free will. Like I said before, these people want to worship the devil. They don’t want God. Forcing God on these people, or any unbeliever, will cause rebellion and division. Jesus never forced Himself on anyone, but offered salvation freely. We’ve all been given the gift of salvation, but it’s our choice to receive it.

What about praying? Praying that God would change their hearts and desires? It is possible for a Satanist to convert to Christianity, but what happens to begin the process of changing their heart? It’s all well to be praying for these people, but we need to live it out as well. We need to live like Jesus.

Salvation can never receive a firm foundation when it’s received out of fear, guilt, or obligation. “If you don’t want Christ, you have no business standing here on this pulpit.”

Another sad truth is that people are learning to live without Christ. People are comfortable and simply don’t want God. They have perfect lives, so they simply aren’t interested in knowing Christ because they have it all figured out. Christianity is becoming increasingly irrelevant, and despite the attempts to counter society (God’s not Dead anyone?), people are continually rejecting the idea of an all loving God. So how can we change this? By living a life out of Christ’s peace and fulfillment, and rather than try to explain the existence of God, show that He exists in your life.

But there are happy atheists as well, aren’t there? Of course, but they can’t say to me that they have never wondered, “What if there was more?” That they’ve never felt a little empty inside, because without Christ, the author of life, we’re all hollow inside, and though wealth will give temporary pleasure, that’s all it is, temporary. Christ’s love is far beyond temporal. It’s everlasting.

No one can force Jesus on a Satanist or an atheist, but we can show them the gift they’ve been given. And we can pray that the Holy Spirit will begin to move in and around their lives to point them to the cross.

Jesus cried blood for these people in Gethsemane, why aren’t we?It’s time to be the light in a kingdom of darkness. It’s time we continue the legacy Jesus left.

The Lord’s Prayer: Letting Go of Our Kingdoms

Alright, post four in the Lord’s Prayer series. So far we’ve gone through, “Our Father, who art in Heaven, Hallowed by thy name,” Now we’re going to look at, “thy Kingdom come.” What do you imagine when you hear this prayer? I want to talk about that today.

When I hear that prayer, I instantly think of surrender, of letting go of our own kingdoms, or in other words, our own desires. When I picture a kingdom I see a large city, with some sort of palace in the center. Jesus says the kingdom of Heaven is like a treasure in a field which man has found and covered up. And in the joy of finding this treasure, he goes and sells everything he owns to buy that field.

We have to ask ourselves, “What is it about this kingdom that a wealthy man will sell all he has to have it?” It’s because this man found the true treasure. A treasure far greater than any earthly thing could give.

So another question comes to mind: Why aren’t we seeking after it? If the kingdom of God is the greatest treasure, why are we always settling for mediocrity? We’re constantly trying to build and further our own kingdoms. We gain all the riches of this world, yet we never seem satisfied.

Our kingdoms are like the house which a man built upon the sand. Living in a fallen world, there’s no solid ground to build anything upon, so when the waves start rolling in, or to put it in modern terms, when the debts start rolling in, it falls apart and gets washed out to sea. But the kingdom of God, found not in this world, is like the house which a man built on the rock. The waves wash against it, but unlike sand, a rock can’t be easily moved, so it stands firm.

The riches of this world, our own kingdoms, are only temporary, and some day we’re going to have to let them go. But the kingdom of Heaven is eternal. It keeps on satisfying for now and forever.

So why do we keep missing it? Why are we focused on building our own kingdoms? I believe it’s because we don’t want to let them go. We can control the kingdoms we build, and we don’t want to give that up. It’s what gives us our worth. Without our kingdoms, what are we? That’s why when I hear the words, “Let your kingdom come,” I hear complete and utter surrender or all control and power, to the one who made it all.

And it shouldn’t be so hard, because our kingdoms are worthless anyway. All the riches of this world, they’re only meant to serve one purpose: to point to the one who made them. Jesus. The greatest treasure of them all. Christ’s love shown on the cross.

So let’s let go of our own kingdoms. Lets give them all to Christ, and lets press forward to His. “Let your kingdom come.” Complete and total surrender.

God Bless, and thanks for reading!

 

Our Works Vs. Christ’s.

There’s one thing that’s been on my mind lately, and that’s myself. Yes, the good old Lucas you love so much isn’t so perfect after all :) A conversation I had with a friend of mine really awakened my own realization of who I was, and what I was doing in my own life, and that’s failing.

Readers, if you read this and look up to me, please don’t, because I’m not perfect, and I’m definitely not worthy to be an idol, only Christ is. But I never used to think that. I wanted to be that idol people looked up to. I wanted to be the one who people looked to and said, “He’s got everything under control.” I tried to be the best person for Christ I can be; and I’m constantly trying to change my actions. To turn away from the sins of my youth. Yet, each time I fall.

It’s a cycle we all go through, especially new Christians. They receive Christ, and they love Him and want to do His will, yet their sinful nature is just too strong. Believe me, it’s like a sumo facing an anorexic. In our own strength, there’s no way to win. It’s as simple as that. We aren’t strong enough to defeat the flesh nature, but Jesus is.

You hear the preachers that say after you’ve received Christ, “Now you need to change your habits and turn away from the life of sin you once lived.” Pastor, I wish I could. I wish I could have the power to change my ways. I wish I could run from my sin, but I can’t. Why is that? Why do I feel such a burden on my back?

I wasn’t fixing my eyes on the work that’s already done. I was focusing on changing my ways, on becoming a Christian worthy of God’s love and grace. Yet I never got there.

The good news of the Gospel is this, Christ died for all sins, past, present, future, and there’s nothing else we need to do to become worthy and loved. The work is already done. I was trying to be my own saviour. I was trying to add to the work on the cross, to carry the cross beyond calvary, which was why I fell down so many times, and why I still do.

When we focus on our own works, at trying to be a better person, it’s prideful. It’s your own works you want to count.

We need to fix our eyes, not on our own works, but on His. And once we fix our eyes on His work, our works will change, because the Holy Spirit will come in and change us from the inside out. I found this true for myself. There’s this one temptation that gets me every time, and when I try to stop it, it always manages to swallow me up. But when I fixed my eyes on Christ, and rested in the knowledge that if I fell, it’s ok, my desire completely changed. That temptation no longer had a hold on me because Christ’s love became so much more fulfilling than any wrong I can do. That’s one of the reasons a lot of new Christians bail out. They simply can’t run the race because they can’t perform. The law places us in condemnation, which enslaves us, but grace places us in freedom, which saves us.

But what happens if we don’t want to change? Our sinful nature is a monster that will take us down to the lowest of lows, and because God can’t interfere with free will, He lets it. Folks, if we want to stay in our ways, we’ll only end up somewhere we don’t want to be, but if we want to only follow Christ and not your old ways, He’ll begin the process of change in you, because greater is the one living in you, than he who is in the world.

What I want you to go out with today is this: if you fall, get back up, and keep your eyes on Him, because the work He’s begun in you, He is faithful to complete it. It was promised when He cried out on the cross, “It is finished!”

God Bless.

The Dirty Guv’nahs: Hearts on Fire album review

HOF-Album-Cover-Square

 

Let me tell you a story. I was browsing the free music website Noisetrade when I saw one of the top album downloads. It was Hearts on Fire by a band named the Dirty Guv’nahs. Obviously, I didn’t think much of it, and with the fact that they weren’t Christian, shrugged them off. I mostly browse through the Christian category on Noisetrade, and other than the front page, don’t really know what else comes out. Well, there was nothing new in the Christian aisle, so out of boredom, I decided to give Hearts on Fire a listen, since it was only going to be free for two weeks. The first song was Where I stand, so I clicked play and sat back to listen. After three minutes, I was completely blown away, and I don’t take that lightly.

If you know me, you will know that I’m a highly critical person when it comes to the music I listen to, and very rarely do I ever give an album five out of five (no, neither will this album), but after that first song, I was hooked, and so I listened through the rest and downloaded the album. It has a folk, Americana/rock vibe that’s addicting and extremely joyful. It’s just a joy to listen to, and having listened to it about ten times in three days (I’m serious) it’s become one of my top favourite albums of the year.

Before I go on, I want to note that these guys aren’t Christians, at least not in my knowledge, and usually I avoid secular music, but this is a fresh contrast from the crude and explicit songs we hear on the radio these days. In fact, this album has had more of a moral impact on me than a lot Christian artists. There comes a time where we need more than just “We glorify your name” songs. We need something that will teach us valuable lessons, like a proverb, and that is what the Guv’nahs deliver.

The album begins with a beautiful folk beat with Where I Stand. A song bursting with hope and triumph as James sings, “I believe in right and wrong, I believe that no one’s born to lose.” It’s basically about standing up again after a fall, and continuing the journey. Very encouraging.

Morning Light is one of the most up beat, most joyful song I’ve heard in a while. A simple song about spending time with friends, but again not without some nugget of wisdom snuck in. “I’ve been hiding from the memories of the things that I once did, but I don’t want to be defined by them no more.”

Skip two songs ahead and we get to the heartbreaker, Dear Jamie. A song about a wife leaving her husband because “of the poison in his heart.” It’s a song about regret and a plea to “don’t break my heart.” The moral is the conseqences of treating someone you love wrongly.

Under Control is a personal favourite of mine, beginning with a U2ish guitar intro. It’s about the fake control we have with wealth, but still not feeling free. “I want to know what it means to be free. All these things that I think I need, I just want to be free.” It then goes on to a story where he meets a girl, and wishing to marry her, yet because of his love of money above her, he now sings alone.

Three Little Angels is the most heartbreaking song on the record, James sings “we need love to keep us moving forward, it’s no good to hold it in our hearts, and the hardest parts are yet to come.” This can easily be sung on Christian radio, and like I said before, a lot of these songs have morals that a lot of Christian musicians seem to be missing.

But all these songs can’t compare to the closer: Canyons. An absolutely beautiful song. I simply collapse in tears with the lyrics “She wants be clean, but she doesn’t want for them to know all the ugly that she’s done and seen. Oh I wish someone would help me.
Can you help me? Cause I just wanna be loved. It’s all that I’m holding onto.” The truth is, most of the time, people don’t need prayer. Jesus never said, “I’ll pray for you,” without first helping the person. He loved them and lifted them up. We need to love, and in the end of the song, the Guv’nahs do exactly that with the incredibly encouraging lyrics, “At the bottom of it all, that’s where you’ll find hope,” to end the album out.

Overall, the Dirty Guv’nahs have released a stellar album of foot tapping songs that make your day a whole lot happier. And just because they don’t sing about God, don’t let that put you off. The Guv’nahs are easily one of the most lyrically clean secular bands I’ve ever heard. There’s basically not one objectionable lyric in the whole album, and that’s certainly a great thing.

So I don’t know about you, but I’ll be happily dancing along with the Guv’nahs on repeat for a good while.

4.5/5

And for one last week, their album is still free to download. Here’s the link: thedirtyguv’nahsnoisetradedownload.

The Lord’s Prayer: The Intimate God

So we began the prayer with “Our Father.” It’s a community of believers, whom God has called into fellowship with Him. After that Jesus then goes on to say, “Our Father, who art in Heaven, hallowed by thy name.” Jesus begins by bringing us together, then He responds in a magnificent declaration of praise. What I want to focus on today is the way Christ describes the Father.

Notice Jesus doesn’t say “Our God, who art in Heaven.” He says our Father. That’s pretty crazy, because Jesus sees God as His father. This was a completely new description of God back then, because everyone thought God was just this great holy being in the stars, but Jesus called Him His father. Abba Father.

So God is our intimate father who loves us unconditionally. That’s great news, because if I saw God as just a holy being in the stars, honestly, with all the sinful things I’ve done, I would be afraid to approach Him. I would try to work my way to acceptance, yet that can never be achieved. But now that I see God as my father, I can approach Him knowing He’ll love me no matter what I’ve done. And like how a father loves his child regardless of physical performance, so does God loves us regardless of the good and bad we’ve done, because Jesus took our it all upon Himself.

Now I know God is my father, but I’m beginning to have my doubts whether He can be someone who can help me with my problems. Jesus then goes on to say, “Who art in Heaven, hallowed by thy name.” Right there Jesus hits us with a blaring contrast. So this father Jesus is talking about is the holy God in the stars after all! He’s the all powerful, magnificent, holy God we’ve known all along, yet we’ve completely missed the point.

If God was just my father, I would know He loves me, but I’m not sure if He can help me. But if God was just all powerful, I know He can do stuff, but I don’t think He’ll want to help me. But that’s not the case. What we have is the two in one: a loving father, and an all powerful God. He’s strong, yet merciful. Hallowed, revered, holy, yet loving, caring, and gracious.

So Jesus invites us into this intimacy with God, and we no longer have to prove ourselves worthy, because a father accepts his child no matter the fault. This gives me courage, because I know that if I fall in my walk, I know He’ll always be there to lift me back up.

God Bless, I hope this helps!

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.