Saturday, October 23, 2010

THE Gift

My wife always says that I think too much. That if I would just accept things at face value, I wouldn't have these long periods of time when I am agnostic. I know everyone experiences times of doubt and skepticism...I would just like to have them less often. And when I have them, I would love to find the evidence lean in favor of my belief in God.

But much of the time, I look and see more to dissuade me from my faith than to validate it.

Like...why do I have to keep praying for faith...and then feel that I have it, only to lose it again. How about just giving me a lifetime measure of faith which is always there...always secure? Going back and forth from "Yeah, I love God!" to feeling Freud may have been right, that I am just another neurotic soul who has bought into a mass delusion. Am I so afraid, so discontent with my life that I have to delude myself that there will be an afterlife where I get to do all the things that I don't get to do here on earth?

{Example: After hearing of a friend's lavish vacation, made possible by his impressive six figure salary I thought: "Heaven better be pretty impressive because down here, I'm missing out on some great stuff."}

So then, of course, I remember that my 5 figure salary is a king's ransom to 85% of the rest of the inhabitants of this earth. Boy, I bet they REALLY look forward to heaven. But wait, a huge percentage of them don't believe in Christ and thus...for all their suffering here, they are going to hell.Christian's can be really sick and self-serving. In fact, most Christians I know are just as sick and self-serving as non-Christan's...but just convinced that they are not.

The problem is, my faith is in something that doesn't really explain God.

A most unfortunate thing has happened to the Christian faith. Christianity has become just a way to get through the day, to feel better about being bad, and to reassure us at the end that we haven't really lost our loved ones...we'll see them again. It's comforting to imagine that someone really is in control of all of this mess, that we will be rewarded as long as we believe the right things.

So. The faithful have come to, at the deepest core belief level, expect Christianity to serve us. When it doesn't (or doesn't seem too), we blame it for our problems. "What can you do for me God?"

I have my faith on backwards.

We weren't created to be served...we were created to serve. Whether we like it or understand it or accept it, God created us to glorify Himself. We are the sculptures, He is the artist.

The sculpture doesn't get to ask for things from the sculptor. It just stands there and looks pretty. People look at it and say "Oh my! That is so incredibly beautiful and amazing...that sculptor is incredible! What talent!"

Of course the sculptor takes VERY good care of his works of art...makes sure they have what they need. But it is the sculptor who decides what each work of art needs. The sculpture is just a stupid piece of can't possibly understand what it needs. If it could come to life and ask the artist, why am I here? The answer would always be: "Because I made you."

"Yeah...but what is my purpose?"

"To reflect my skill. To glorify me."

"That's it?"

"Well, I guess I could hang clothes on you..."

Being a Christian means that the bottom line is, I must accept that my very existence is a gift from the Creator. As such, I'm just here to look pretty. I'm here to serve. I am a mirror to reflect HIS glory, HIS wisdom, HIS power.

I am here to proclaim that GOD IS.

The fact that something went wrong in the museum and a few of the sculptures are lost means that my purpose is also to help find them. To restore them for the ARTIST'S glory.

That is why Christian's thank God for the rain, the sun, their jobs, their spouses, and especially their children. For an artist to provide His work of art with THAT's an impressive piece of workmanship.

"For we are God's masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago." Ephesians 2:10

Thank you God.


  1. As I wade through the events of the last 2 years,most specifically,my daughters leukemia and the journey of those that battled beside her,I had and continue to have, my far share of doubt.As I say goodbye to another precious child,time and again,I search for purpose and my list for the Big Guy,when I get there,if I am in fact so blessed to get there,grows longer.But in the end,it is my faith and unending hope in His promise of tomorrow,that enables me to circle back to truth.Difficult on many days.But that faith allows me to see the beauty that dwells beside the sorrow I have witnessed and continue to witness.

    Awhile back my brother told me about a book that his pastor and his mens group were discussing,"Letters From a Skeptic" ... helpful read when those doubts seems to swallow us.

    Thanks for a really great post.And I'm loving Ken's comment ...

  2. "For we are God's masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago." Ephesians 2:10

    That is perhaps, to me, the singular most powerful section of the bible. Actually, just the one word - POEMA. When I learned of that word, it changed my view of God and our relationship to Him forever. One site said it means "God's spoken word of art".

    Once I accepted that definition of existence, everything changed for me. I hang onto that word. I think of it daily - especially since I stopped going to church a few years ago. That singular word sustains and refreshes me.

  3. Zoey's Mom: Thank you for reading and commenting! Your "good works" and ability to see God is inspiring and humbling. I will certianly check into that book.
    philnjill: Since writing that, I have certainly been mulling it over daily. Thanks for the Greek word...I didn't know it, but certianly do now.
    Ken: It is a gristly bite for me too.

  4. My comment didn't post; argh I can't stand the UI on blogs!
    But what I wrote was WOW....
    I'm so not worthy to be your sister...
    You really have to write a book... I mean you really really do...