Friday, March 30, 2012

Shades of Gray

There are many things the Bible does not say specifically. Should we celebrate certain days as special? Should we totally abstain from alcohol? from dancing? from card playing? from certain movies? Which political party should we follow? Should there be one particular ceremony to worship God?

God does give boundaries we should not trespass. But there is a lot of room within those boundaries. And God does speak to how we need to conduct ourselves within those boundaries.

Everyone should be fully convinced in their own mind.

If there is an issue we are dealing with, we should assertively engage that issue. We should pray, read and mediate. We should consult other sources: people, books, the internet, etc. But if we are supposed to be "fully convinced" we cannot be lazy about our pursuit of a position. And we should live with all our hearts by that truth.

We should not live with a critical spirit.

God speaks to each of us. And we all hear him with varying degrees of success. And because we hear him, the truth affects our hearts, and we are transformed into his likeness.

But sometimes we take that transforming truth and put it on a pedestal. All the world, life, existence and every situation gets interpreted on how it relates to that truth. Every truth is important, because it serves to realign the world. But God speaks different truths to different people, because sin has warped them differently. He applies truth to people differently.

In this life, our paths are going to intersect with people whom God has transformed, who have acted in consort with God to further his Kingdom, but who are wrong from your perspective, because he does not understand your "personal truth." (We define "personal truth" in this case to mean a truth that God has revealed to you, and you have accepted, acted on, and have your heart invested in.)

Of course, you do not understand his personal truth. And neither of you really understands God perspective. And that is where we should be headed.

If God has accepted someone, he is fully convinced from Scripture, and he is genuinely seeking to obey God, we must accept him.

As we stand in the intersection, we will encounter new truth from God. (We define "new truth" in this case to mean a truth that God has not fully revealed to you, you have accepted only so far, have acted on it only so far, and have your heart invested in it only so far.) As we encounter "new truth", we can renew our perspective, and move closer the restoration of God's Kingdom and God's image.

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