Glimpses of grace seen in the everyday

Archive for November, 2014

What is Truth?

“I don’t think I question the legitimacy of Genesis. I believe that it is True and is God’s Word. It is the historical accuracy that I question.”  (A quote from the musical duo Gungor.)

How can you say it’s True but not historically accurate?  How can you say it’s God’s Word and not historically accurate?  The implication is  that God is either ignorant or a liar. 

Words are tricky.  What people say is often not what they mean.  The Oxford dictionary gives these definitions for “true:”

–In accordance with fact or reality
–Accurate or exact

If Mr. Gungor is confused about what is true, he’s not the first one.  Pontius Pilate, after interviewing Jesus, who asserted that his mission was to reveal the truth, spat out, “What is truth?”  Shortly before this, Jesus had assured his disciples, “I am the way, the truth, and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me.” 

“Even if everyone else is a liar, God is true.”  Romans 3:4  (NLT)

Undercover Boss

The other evening we watched, for the first time, an episode of “Undercover Boss.”  The CEO of a pretzel company changed his appearance and spent time at several of his franchises posing as a new employee.  His purpose was to really see the situation of the people who worked for him and how he might help and encourage them.  Getting up close with them, he experienced the difficulties they faced with transporting their goods, heard how hard it was to make ends meet or pay college debts.  He got to share their hopes and their fears, their struggles and their tears—and to appreciate and admire these hard workers.  With tears he expressed how he longed to help them!

At the end of the episode, these lowly laborers were summoned to the boss’s  beautiful office where the disguise was discarded.  The boss expressed his appreciation of their diligence and empathy for their difficulties.  Then each one was rewarded with gifts suited to his particular need—a vacation, payment of a debt, new equipment to make his work easier.  And finally, a huge hug for the faithful employee.

Are you beginning to see what I saw in this?  Jesus Christ …

Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,
but made himself nothing,
taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
and became obedient to death— even death on a cross!               (Philippians 2:6-8)

Yes, He came as one of us, looked like us, hung out with us, suffered the difficulties we humans endure, got hungry and thirsty and tired, was lied about and mistreated—and ultimately killed—all for our good. 

–Not just to give us a vacation but an eternal home in heaven. 
–Not just to pay our college debts but to pay the penalty for our sin and grant us a clean slate to stand blameless before God. 
–Not just to give us new equipment to do our job but to live with and in us day in and day out—teaching, guiding, encouraging and giving joy and strength. 

And one day when I get to see my Boss face to face, the best reward will be to feel His arms around me as He whispers in my ear, “Good job, my faithful daughter!  Welcome to your heavenly home!”

Awesome! Or is it?

A computer game that my husband and I enjoy has an irritating habit of describing our every success as “Awesome!”  This word seems to be the current version of what what used to be neat, cool, or groovy (hate that one!).  But wait a minute!  What is really awesome? 

Awe:  an overwhelming feeling of reverence, admiration, fear, etc., produced by that which is grand, sublime, extremely powerful, or the like.  (Dictionary definition)

From this word comes “awesome,” which should describe things that produce that feeling of awe.  Truly awesome things leave us speechless, weak-kneed, overwhelmed by a grandeur far beyond the ordinary, beyond human comprehension.  My husband uses “awe” to describe the feeling he had when he first saw the Grand Canyon.  It’s how I feel when viewing a particularly beautiful sunset.  When examining the intricate detail of a flower.  Or even when watching the miracle of a huge jetliner soaring gracefully through the sky. It’s other-worldly, evidence of Someone far wiser and more powerful than we are who is showing us a taste of super-human majesty.

If we dumb down the word “awesome” to a mere expression of approval (e.g. the taste of your sandwich), what other word is left to express the feeling inspired by God’s wonderful works that bedazzle our eyes, minds, and imagination?  Or do we have our eyes so glued to our mirrors, menus, and manmade gadgets that we no longer lift them up to see what is truly awesome? 

Click below to enjoy a stirring rendition of “Our God is an Awesome God”—with pictures of His breathtaking creation.  NOW, THIS IS REALLY AWESOME!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aaU6EMR37NA

Truth and Beauty—Eve’s perspective or God’s?

Eve’s perspective on her situation was much like today’s postmodern view:

The fruit was beautiful—“beautiful thoughts, words…”  Anyone can claim anything is beautiful (e.g. abortion, perverted sex, euthanasia, false words about God).

Would make one wise—we get to be like God and decide what is right and true!

Tasted good—it’s fun—if it feels good, do it!

She ate the poison and disaster resulted.  Meanwhile, Satan laughed up his sleeve and thus commenced the battle for the human heart down through the ages.  Have we learned?  Have we forgotten the lessons of the ancient past?  Do we even believe that this happened?

From the Facebook post of a friend: 

The darkness says, “What is truth? Just do what I say. You’ll never really know what is true. And why should it matter, as long as you’re pleasing yourself?”

The Holy One says, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (John 8:31-32)

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