Thursday, January 24, 2013

Do you put God in a box?

Betsy here.

Do you put God in a box?

As Christians, it's pretty easy to do this - especially for those of us good girls who grow up in the church. (   Sometimes, we don't even realize we're doing it. We absorb the image of Christ that we are fed in the church or through family members, and we never take the time to ask ourselves what we really believe - and WHY. We feel like we're not supposed to, that asking questions and figuring out our faith means we're bad Christians or are failing somehow. We're ashamed.

So we ignore the questions, the doubts, stuff it all down, chalk it up to just "needing more faith" and go on, still confused about where God really fits into our lives and Who He really is. And we wonder why we don't have victory? We wonder why we don't have the peace and joy and contentment the Bible talks about?

It's because we're trying to shove God in a box that He refuses to fit in.

My heroine in my YA novel (Addison Blakely, Confessions of a PK - Barbour Books, 2012) had to do this very thing. Her dad is the local pastor and she's never had trouble being a good girl. She just accepted everything that was handed to her and tried to live a good life and keep her dad happy. But now that she's 16 and there's a hot new guy in town interested in her, she's got to ask herself the hard questions. About boys. About choices. About God and life and what it really means to have faith. Why does she believe what she believes? Why does she make the decisions she makes?

It's okay to ask!!

So today, I want to really encourage you to ask questions. Of your parents, your friends who profess to have faith in Christ, your church pastor, your Sunday School teacher, a trusted family friend who seems to you to be spiritually mature. Now listen - don't accept every thing you hear back as truth. Not everything. But rather, piece it together like a puzzle. Run it through the Scriptures and see what matches up.

And of course, ask God.


Yes! Ask God. Who better to ask? :)

The Bible  makes it clear that when we seek God, we will find Him. I would even venture to say that few things please God more than a sincere desire to KNOW Him. To know Who He is. What He's really about, what He's really up to. He wants us to not only acknowledge and appreciate His works, but also His character. His mind. His heart.

Seek and find!

It's the best treasure hunt you'll ever go on :)

And if you don't have anyone trustworthy to ask your questions of, email me. I'm happy to help as best I can.



Anonymous said...

Omigosh, you don't know how many times I've been thinking about this, just today! Like, is it okay to have doubts sometimes. I mean I just tell myself everytime that I need to strengthen my faith, but...omigosh, this is just like God talking to me through you. Thank you!

Betsy St. Amant said...

I'm so glad :) He's pretty awesome like that :)

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for this post. For years I've "piggy-backed" off other people's faith, pretending I felt the love of God and understood what they talked about when in reality, I knew nothing. I do have a question though about when you said not to accept everything as the truth. If somebody above you (such as parents!) says something that doesn't line up with Scripture, what do you do? Do you explain what you think? How will you say this respectfully? :)

Thanks for the post!! :3

Betsy St. Amant said...

That's a good question Anonymous! There's ways to express yourself without being rude or disrespectful. If your parents or authority figure tells you something is true that you know from the Bible is not, you could remain silent and choose not to believe it, or you could speak up with honesty and sincerity and maybe put your protest in the form of a question since questions always seem less offensive. Like: "I see your point, but doesn't the Bible say 'x' about that? What do you think that means then?" or something along those lines.

If your heart is right and not defensive/argumentative, it will show in your words and tone :)

Anonymous said...

I see now, thank you Betsy! :)