For Our Own Good
“…That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good.” [From the Book of Romans, The Message]
There are so many things & so many times & so many tribulations in our lives that make us all want to go bonkers. (Broken relationships, broken homes, broken lives, broken dreams & so on… Road block here, road block there, deadend here, deadend there, detour here, detour there, right turn here, left turn there).
And in my short lifespan so far here in planet earth, there is only one thing that has kept me from or had made me not go crazily insane. Well there are two things actually and both of them aren’t people. And the other one is another topic for another time.
Yes and one of those things is my belief in a God, the God who know more than we all do, who created me, you & everything else.
And my belief in that same God, who is a loving God, who made Himself known to me, by going through all the things that I might go through & by being just like me & you. (Well not like me in all respects of course for that would truly make me bonkers, but you probably know what I mean)… Someone who went through life, living it, like you & me would have & more.
And so, here I am, just like you, walking through my own life. One in which I have been given a huge box of jigsaw puzzle pieces. With nothing to do but to complete it, not even knowing how many different pieces there are, could be 10,000 could be 10 million pieces, not even knowing how much time I have to complete it, not even knowing if all the pieces are already there or if some would come later or if some have been lost. I do not even know what the final picture will look like.
And so my life, our life goes & we go on trying to piece together this (life) puzzle (pun intended by shear pure luck) one piece at a time. Each piece adding to the whole picture of what is to come & each piece we manage to put in making it easier & easier to fit the rest of the loose pieces together. Yes if we can find the right one, at the right time & the right place & order & orientation.
But I am now convinced that there is a God. That same God that I talked about earlier. And that He is like the glue who will hold all the pieces together. And the very one who will finally tell us the who, the what, the when, the how come & the why of all these.
And now I have also applied that to my spiritual life. (Which is like really taking a whole load off my chest, if we really could even fathom how that would really feel like).
And this leads me to believe that I do not have to debate or compare or be upset or be angry at or scoff at or demean or bad mouth another Christian believer, because they are of a different sect, denomination, church or creed or they have different practices, beliefs, traditions, etc. etc. (Well I am not including those that do not believe in the Son of Man & what the Scriptures say about Him). Or regardless if “they” (other Christians not like me) tend to give us “Christians” a bad name or a bad reputation. (Grow up man, to many being a Christian means you already have a bad reputation).
Yes we have no need for that, for I believe that it is for freedom that He set us free. (Just in time for this Lenten Season & Resurrection Sunday). We are all free, but of course we are not free to willfully indulge in a sinful way of life but you know, to live a life that everything is permissible but not everything is beneficial kind of thing.
And he has given us everything we need to do that, we have common sense, or at least we have a little bit of sense which is common enough, we have enough sense of humor, we have a fairly good idea of what is right & what is wrong, we have a conscience, we have feelings–we know how it feels to hurt or be hurt, we have the Word of God or the Scriptures, we have the Holy Spirit and we have a group of people we can come together with & have fellowship with or ask our hard life questions with.
And so each of us Christ believers or Christians, whatever denomination or non-denomination we say we belong to, whoever our pastor is, whatever congregation we go to, whatever version of the Bible we read or not read, whatever hymns or songs we use to sing to our Lord, whatever instruments we use to give praise to our God, whether we believe or not in clapping or screaming or dancing or the gifts of the Holy Spirit or in speaking in tongues, or in tithing or any ceremonial thing or in dispensations or in whatever forms of salvation or the different forms to attain it or in eternal security.
Whatever kind of Christian we are, IF WE LOVE GOD then all things (which makes us different) WILL WORK OUT FOR GOOD.
I do not really preach in here nor quote Bible verses every statement I make but I guess maybe for the very first & last time I will…
And loving God isn’t really the problem here. For God first loved us. [1 Jn 4:19]
The love we give back to God, He first gave it to us. [Jn 3:16]
And the love we give others, comes from that same love. If we do not have that love then maybe we have lost it or have not really have it in the first place. (And please do not mistake a love of yourself for that love for others).
And so if we do have that love, we can love others, even those who believe somewhat differently than us. And if we all love God, we should all love those who believe in the same God we believe in. [1 Ptr 2:17]
So really the problem isn’t really love. But us (and all the missing puzzle pieces that we have yet to put together).
All things will work out for good!
Some people may still not have all the pieces put together, but in time they would. Some people may be a little bit slower than your pace, but in time they would catch up. Some people may be a little bit hard-headed than you, but in time they would come around.
This love that we have is not about who came in first, or who was first to bat, or who made the most goals, the most baskets, the most points, the most kills, the most holes in one, the most strikes, the most strike-outs, the highest score, the loudest cheers, the most awards & accolades, the most prestigious titles & letters preceeding & behind our names.
This love is about Jesus. This love is Jesus. This love is God. God is love!
Think about it, if Jesus was beside you right now, will he be doing what you have been doing? Or will he not be more understanding of your fellow believer? Or will he be doing something else to win his brothers over instead of pushing them away from God or God’s love? Yes the love that you have inside you.
Remember, God did make all the puzzle pieces, He do know where & when & how all the pieces will finally fit into place. He do know more that we will ever know. Yes, even if we have mastered the Scriptures & even if we have decades of scholarly work & studies. Yes, even if we think we know enough or even more than others. Yes, even if we think we have done the whole world a big favor by doing charitable work. Yes even if we were the very first believers in our place & all the others are just starting to believe & are mere Baby-Christians.
It is not about all that, it is not even about us. Apart from God, we cannot do anything. [Jn 9:33] And if you are doing a lot apart from Him or apart from His love, then be very careful who you are doing it with, for it is not with Him. [Mt 12:30]. But test it, for it is by your fruits that they will know you or know who you really are in the inside.
Jesus will come back for a spotless Bride, the whole Body of Christ or the whole Body of believers, not for a few who think they are only ones worthy to be saved because all the other sects, denominations & Christian believers do not get it. I am pretty sure there are a lot of Christian believers who do not get it. But it doesn’t follow that just because they are wrong, that you are right or that you are more right. For all we know, both of you could be wrong. You might ju
st be “more wronger” for being snotty enough to claim that you got it all right and they got it all wrong. (Please)
But make no mistake Jesus will indeed come back, whether you like it or not. Or whether you believe it or not. Or whether you think you are more worthy or more highly of another or not. Or whether you think you got it right & all the rest of us mere human beings got it wrong.
And here’s one last thing to think about. Because we are all different, what if God really plan to have all those different Christian sects, denominations & practices so as to be able to reach out to each of our individual differences, likes & dislikes, hang-ups, nuissances, backgrounds & cultures? And as we all piece together our heavenly jigzaw puzzle, what if in the end we will all finally be able to piece together enough & finally see the big picture & get it. (And get to finally see that we are not better than any of them, but are all the same–someone so messed up & in need of a Savior who has patiently waited for us to finally get it. Remember the Prodigal Son. We were that Prodigal Son at one time or another or all the time. But what if you were the son who never left, but just the same was as messed up as his prodigal brother?)
Seize that thought, seize this day.
We are assured and know that [God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose. [Romans 8:28, Amplified]