Wednesday, July 07, 2010

bigger than

Sometimes I forget that God is bigger than anything else. My mistakes. My accomplishments. My future. My words. My past. My lack of skills. My relationships. The actions of others. World events. He is just bigger than it all. When I tend to focus on the minor stuff of life, I need something to help me jettison the small-mindedness and see once again that this ginormous God I belong to is leaps and bounds beyond everything. One of those helpful somethings is truth.

Truth is not a set of facts. Jesus said that he was the truth, so if I know what Jesus looks like, I know what truth looks like. But if I don't know what truth looks like, I can easily get confused, overwhelmed, deceived, or discouraged. Truth is consistent and alive, but not totally predictable (which is why I need to keep searching Him out and getting to know him better). And truth is bigger than my thoughts, my ideas, my understanding, my perceptions, facts, arguments, feelings, accusations, you name it. Truth cuts through it all.

God means what he says. What he says goes. His powerful Word is sharp as a surgeon's scalpel, cutting through everything, whether doubt or defense, laying us open to listen and obey. Nothing and no one is impervious to God's Word. We can't get away from it - no matter what. - from Hebrews 4, The Message

One red flag that lets me know that I am not really letting truth be present and big in my life is the attitude that, "This does not apply to me." Or the thought that, "That person is being an idiot and someone should teach him a lesson." What I am doing by copping this defensive attitude is taking myself out of the equation. I have removed myself from anything I might learn in the scenario, especially humility. I have made myself bigger than truth.

A ridiculously tiny example that is one of my personal reminders to embrace humility and truth is jaywalking. I know it is illegal. I know that the laws are there for everyone's protection, including mine, but sheesh, where there is not a car in sight, what's the big deal? The big deal is not that I cross the street on a red light, but that I think the law does not apply to me. When I get defensive about this minor infraction, I am forgetting that my actions and attitudes affect an entire community. When I do this, I have taken a step away from humility and instead, moved in the direction of self-important pride that separates me from God and undermines community.

An example from the Bible is David, who got himself into a bit of a mess by having an affair with a married woman and then murdering her husband to cover it up. When Nathan (a messenger from God) came and told him about a rich man who stole his poor neighbour's pet lamb despite having an entire herd of sheep himself, David was outraged. He demanded that the thief be brought to immediate and severe justice. Nathan simply said, "You are that man." Oh oh. (see 2 Samuel 11-12 for details).

David had totally deceived himself into thinking that certain consequences did not apply to him. The very same guidelines that he believed were good and right for the general public to follow in order to maintain a peaceful and functioning community, were adjusted for his own benefit. His personal agenda became bigger than truth. It is a very dangerous attitude to indulge in.

I continuously struggle to keep myself in the arena of humility where I can embrace the truth, no matter how inconvenient or costly it is. I am not bigger than the truth. I am not bigger than the law. I am not bigger or better than the next guy. If it is Truth, it applies to all of us and it applies to me. And I want to apply Jesus to my life, yes I do.

I need more truth in my life. I also need more humility that will enable me to hear and see truth. I get lost too easily without it's guiding light and clarity. Let my life reflect that truth is bigger than me. That God is indeed bigger than all of this.
This is a photo of me and my metro cart. From this perspective, it is bigger than me.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Jaywalking?! But you live in Montreal! Just kidding ... thanks for sharing.

Jer