Do you want to see God change you? Then swing wide the front door of your heart. Invite his liberating truth to come in, settle down, and encourage your heart.
In Everyday Church, Steve Timmis and Tim Chester note that we often chide others or beat ourselves up because we are not believing the truth about God.
We counteract lies with truth. Here are four truths about God they point out and the implication for our lives:
- God is great -- so we do not have to be in control.
God uses everything that happens to work out his good in our lives (Romans 8:26-39). We can relax and rest in that truth and his care.
- God is glorious -- so we do not have to fear others.
Worrying about what other people will think is crippling. God says, "fear of man will prove to be a snare" (Proverbs 29:25). When we recognize God as the glorious One and live for his approval, we can relax.
- God is good -- so we do not have to look elsewhere.
The Psalmist reminds us, "in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore" (Psalm 16:11). We get into trouble when we think something or someone other than God is going to satisfy us. It won't. Jesus is enough.
- God is gracious -- so we don't have to prove ourselves.
Why do we feel like we have to win the approval of others? We don't. If Jesus has made us acceptable before God (and he has), what's left to prove? Who do we need to impress?
When I have nothing left to prove, I am free to rest in God's goodness, and help others do the same. Understanding that -- and living in that --- helps bring out the best in others, even when "bringing out the best" means sharing some hard words.
Who can you encourage with the "4 Gs" today?
The quotes and "4 Gs" teaching comes from the book, Everyday Church: Gospel Communities On Mission. Wheaton, IL: Crossway. 2012. Pages 79-83. Special thanks to my friend Casey Cleveland for reminding me of these good words.