“Often we think our image of God is limited to our concepts and beliefs, but actually it’s less about our theology and more about our knee-ology. How we actually feel and experience God when we pray is largely based on our early childhood relationships. . . . What do you see when you look into God’s face?”- Bill Gaultiere
In Chapter 3 (“The C Stage: Confidence in Christ”) of Journey of the Soul, Bill Gaultiere stresses that Abraham = the Bible’s prototype for this first stage of faith. Because Abraham trusted God’s promise to bless him in a new land. And Abraham persevered through great difficulties because he knew God in spiritual reality. Not because he tied his faith to the visible world.
Furthermore, Bill underscores, you possess a precious and unique faith story. Above all, you need to tell, nurture, and develop that story. In addition, at this C Stage our Good Shepherd offers us abundant and eternal life. But Satan’s vying to steal and destroy that life. He aggressively pulls us into dark lies and pushes us into worldly pleasures.
However, the Holy Spirit never tries to force our hand. Instead, He woos us with persistent and gentle love. Thus, God cares for us with His hessed, Hebrew for ‘sticky love.’ The word hessed occurs 248 times in the Old Testament. In Psalm 63:3 we read, “Your unfailing love is better than life itself; how I praise you!”
In conclusion, Bill observes, research reveals the power of our God-image. So powerful that it fosters changes to our brain circuits. So, when you look God in the face, do you see a blank stare or a stone-faced statue? A picture book that features ninety-five famous pictures of Jesus from the fourteenth to the twentieth centuries contains only one painting that shows Jesus smiling. Yet Jesus prays for us to be full of His joy!
Therefore, Bill adds:
“In the deepest part of our personality, we’re all like children, with insecurities and hopes. . . . Trusting in God’s kindness to you is what activates and guides you to make positive changes in your life (Rom. 2:4). The Lord is our deliverer, healer, and provider before being our lawgiver.”
Today’s question: What’s your image of God? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “Discipleship – emotions often minimized”