GOD

Larry and Darlene ShortPeople usually make one of two key mistakes when thinking about God. They either think He is utterly unlike us ... or that he is too much like us.

God claims to have created us ... which in itself reveals a great deal about the nature of God (just as domesticated, people-conscious animals reveal something about the nature of those who domesticated them).

In addition, God has chosen to reveal Himself to us through Scripture. Scripture says God has also revealed himself to us in our hearts (through our conscience, for instance -- our consciousness of sin) as well as through nature. I find it amazing that some people who claim to be smart can peer through a telescope into the dim recesses of this amazing universe and not deduce the Designer through the design.

So what has God revealed about Himself? That He made us in his image (that we are in some ways, in our best ways, like Him); and that He loves us and cares about us deeply enough to give us His best. That He desires us to be in a right relationship with Him, and reveals to us exactly how to do that.

He also reveals that we are very unlike Him in some ways. In our sinfulness, in our selfishness, in our self-destructiveness. One should have neither too low a view of God, nor too aloof a view of God. He is utterly holy, yet utterly personal.

Because God is a person, the most important thing to know about relating rightly to Him is that what He desires is a relationship, not a system of religious observance. Over and over the God says that He grants us a license to "know Him." Being utterly truthful, He would not say it if it were not so. Do you know Him?

My final word of advice about God is not to be suckered by the conventional wisdom that there are many different paths to find Him. God himself reveals that the only way to truly know Him is through faith in His Son, Jesus Christ. This is the "narrow road." God has a very dismal view of our current love of "tolerance." Many roads may lead to Rome, but only one leads to God.

How do you get to know God? The same way you might get to know any other person. Read his biography. Start with the Gospel of John, then read Romans, then other books as you feel led. Don't stop til you've read all of it ... then start all over again.

Spend time conversing with him, heart to heart. Remember that conversation is two-way ... both talking and listening. Ask Him for the privilege of knowing Him, ask Him to reveal more of Himself to you. God promised to us that if we seek Him with all our heart, we will find Him!

THE PLAYGROUND OF A CREATIVE GOD. The photo above is from the "Hubble Deep Field" ... basically, the background wallpaper of the universe. It is one of the furthest looks into space ever taken by the Hubble Telescope. The field comprises a space only 1/30th of the apparent width of the moon. Each dot of light (a billion times fainter than what can be detected by the naked human eye) is a galaxy containing an average 100 billion stars each. The significance of this photo is that the universe is essentially the same in any direction you look ... unimaginably vast. CREDIT: NASA/ESA/STScI/HUBBLE.