I know the way New Year’s resolutions usually go, but this year I do have something that could be called a resolution. I am reading With by Skye Jethani. “Stop Living Your Life Under, Over, From and For God and Start Living in Communion With Him.” The concept is simple, but profound truth usually is.
Under God – We are suffering the consequences of our deeds. If we are good then good things will come to us. We try to control our fears (and by implication, God) by being as good as we can. But then we fail and the fear increases.
Over God – We deduce principles from Holy Books and experience that should hold true in all circumstances. By following these principles carefully we control the outcomes and our fears, and God simply has to play along…
From God – We need God’s blessings much more than we need God. We ask and we hope we will receive. Sometimes we do and sometimes we don’t. We control our fears by asking and standing on the promises of God. But what happens when we do not receive?
For God – We pour ourselves out in service to God and mankind. We believe that this pleases God. We find our significance in this. Out biggest fear may be to be of no consequence, to be worthless. We control this fear by living a selfless life.
I think I have at different times lived under, from and for god and sometimes get lured by life over God. But I can see that this is not what we were created for. We were created for communion WITH God. He made us to be his friends.
Jesus told his disciples: “I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.”
If we live with God, fear and the need to control it goes away. We do not live for some day (even though there will be a good future with Him,) but we enjoy our Treasure now. We experience His joy now. We live boldly, honestly, transparently.
So for 2017 this is my biggest focus: To cultivate this vision of Jesus as my friend and as my treasure. To talk to him and listen to him, spend time with him, walk with him, work with him, be with him.
And I believe that the more this is real for me, the more my life will be reflecting his. 2 Corinthians 3:18: “And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.”