Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” – Mark 12:30-31
In introducing this challenge I purchased a daily devotional to complete this and spoke about the greatest commandment. I did not expect that the first devotional would be on just that subject. I did not open the book until now to do this. I think that going in with no expectations is the best way to do this because then we can eliminate the bias of the subjects. That being said I want to examine the questions raised in this devotional and answer them. My answers are not guarded and I have no intention of upsetting someone. I am just a man chasing God with my heart, I am not wanting to be right or wrong, just to grow.
How do you see God and how do you view yourself?
God is my father, He is father to us all. That is an undeniable truth because He has created everything and that is but one role a father does, He creates. I am His child, He has created me and formed me in my mother’s womb to be not only who I am but to witness what He has done for me. I did not always feel this way, I was raised in church mostly of my own doing. This is no slight on my parents but I chose to go to church more often than they went with me. I’ve also turned from God and have been the belligerent child. Now, I am His again and forevermore.
Do you see God as loving and available?
Most times. This doubt I know is my own doing and not His because God told us He is always available (Joshua 1:9) we just have to seize that love and wrap ourselves in it. I doubt when I am upset about something or Bethany and I have disagreements about how I parent versus her idea of parenting. I wonder if I am a good father and question myself, not God.
Do you see God as being involved in your life?
I do, I see him in everything. He brought Bethany in to my life as a way to get me in back to church and change my heart from what it was to who I am now. Two years is a long time in our life if we really look at our normal lifespan. It’s more than 2% of our time! He’s given me the courage to step-out of my comfort in ways I did not want to. I was not always a “social butterfly” but now I know no stranger because I want them to see Him in me. Good or bad I know God is there but I also know he isn’t going to do it all for me. What father does? He teaches His children to be self-sufficient in some ways but in others they still remain entirely dependent on Him.
Do you see Him as a loving Father in your life?
I do, good or bad I see Him work on me. When I am in doubt I pray and even if I don’t get an answer I want I get comfort and a father comforts His children. Every day I get time with Him when I drive to and from work I get to pray uninterrupted and sometimes it is the whole drive and other times it may be five minutes but when I’m done I feel like I’m closer than I was before and I feel loved. We don’t need miracles to know He is our father but we do need to feel His love when we are happy or even when we are troubled (Zephaniah 3:17). He is there for me with no questions asked.
How do you see yourself, as a child of God?
Joyous. Blessed. Loved. I see myself as all those things. I also can be petulant or angry or wandering. God is bigger than that though. He is patient with me when I want it my way. He is calming when I am angry because I don’t understand why God let’s things happen. He is the shepherd when I have wandered off and have begun choosing things I probably shouldn’t. How do I see myself as a child of God? I see myself as one of the most cherished children in the world because my Father loves me enough to look past any iniquity (Romans 8:37-39) I have created and still wants me.
Day 1 and I already feel like God is the best Father a child could ask for. I want to be like that with my own kids even if it may be hard it is worth it. God is here with arms wide open ready to share His love, His will and His voice with us. I just need to step forward and listen so that I may hear Him when He speaks. Knowing this means I know I have a relationship with God it must be nurtured on myself because Jesus finished all the work ever needed. It’s time to dig deep, get dirty and come up with the gold my soul requires.