Pocket God

1 Peter: 1

3Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, 5who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 6In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, 7so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 8Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, 9obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls

I have always considered myself to have a personality a lot like Peter. He accepted Jesus invitation to follow and eagerly went off to change the world and just like me he believed he had the perfect plan to do just that. I am convinced the amount of times his correction is recorded in the Bible is not even close to the number it really happened. So many times I can see Jesus shaking His head at my choices and putting me back in place because I just don’t stop to pay attention.  Just like Peter I often have to be humbled before I stop and see the big picture. So many verses are running through my head today: “out of the abundance of the mouth the heart speaks”, “in this world there will be trials”, “I have overcome the world” there are many more but these three are enough for now. I have not stopped to look at the big picture in all of this and I again I am being corrected in my spirit. I have been to a few different countries and I have seen some trials but I have not experienced them. The desire to put a push bumper on my car so I can act out my road rage on the way to work is not a trial it is the condition of my heart. Standing in judgement of anything someone else is doing is a condition of my heart not a trial to be endured while I sweetly tell a friend about them. Telling someone about Jesus and having them tell me it is just a crutch is not really persecution and showing up at church and pitching in every now and then is not really faithfulness so where is what the Bible says being played out in my life? The answer is that it isn’t. I accept His hope, inheritance, love, joy, peace, provision; this list is very long, but just like the Israelites that are still looking for their Messiah, the Jesus presented to me is not quit the one I want. I am surrounded by a thousand churches and a million lost people so why would I rather cut off the ear of the ones coming to crucify my Savior than tell them who He is? Jesus is presenting me with a bigger picture it is not just telling my neighbor (although I don’t think I shouldn’t do that) the first commandment with promise “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, and soul and love your neighbor as yourself” or “esteem others above yourself” or “judge not least you be judged” “humble yourself under the mighty hand of God”, the word tells me to guard my heart, renew my mind and so what am I doing with that? I believe women are the heart of the church body, we have so many other roles their also but the love level is set by the women. In the middle of comfort and complacency the enemy whispers in my ear that I am not enough and I choose to believe him and not God. “God does not call the equipped He equips the called” that really sounds like pastors, and missionaries but it really means me. Today the childishness of my faith is painful, the amount of surrender I have experienced is nothing and shamefully I have made for myself a pocket God. I can take Him out when it pleases me or I want something and I can put Him back in my pocket when I want to fulfill the desires of my flesh. I am living American Christianity at its finest and how far I have missed the mark hurts a little more than I was prepared for; and still He calls me beloved.

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