things look smaller from up here…

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The bigger your faith grows, the smaller your giants look!

There are things in our life that need to be tackled and thrown to the ground, but from a natural standpoint, it seems impossible! I remember hiding my eyes under my covers one night when I was a little girl because there was a huge man in my room! He was as tall as the ceiling and I was so afraid that I wouldn’t open my eyes and look up until Mother came in to make sure I was covered and turned on the light! Turns out that the “man” was my dad’s coat, which was on a big wooden hanger, hanging on my door! It was a simple thing, but to a little girl it looked like a scary monster!

The shepherd David had protected his flock of sheep from invading bears, lions and probably ravening wolves! The practice he got and the strength he gained by fighting and defeating those wild animals gave him the courage he needed to fight Goliath the giant.

Fear is Faith perverted, it makes the smallest problems seem huge, but when you can give it to God, He is able to “bring it down to size“!

Hebrews 11:1-3 The fundamental fact of existence is that this trust in God, this faith, is the firm foundation under everything that makes life worth living. It’s our handle on what we can’t see. The act of faith is what distinguished our ancestors, set them above the crowd. By faith, we see the world called into existence by God’s word, what we see created by what we don’t see.

To have perfect faith, you have to become like a child in that a child believes everything you tell him! If you hide your face behind your hand, then pop out and say BOO, he really is surprised because he really thought you were gone! If you tell him there is a Santa he will defend that jolly old Saint to all of his non-believing friends. We have to believe God with the same childlike tenacity!

Verses 5-6 of Hebrews 11 says, By an act of faith, Enoch skipped death completely. “They looked all over and couldn’t find him because God had taken him.” We know on the basis of reliable testimony that before he was taken “he pleased God.” It’s impossible to please God apart from faith. And why? Because anyone who wants to approach God must believe both that he exists and that he cares enough to respond to those who seek him.

Job retained his faith in God when was tried! He suffered the loss of his family and his properties, plus he was covered with boils! He sat on a dung heap and scraped himself with a broken piece of pottery, just trying to feel better. He went from bad to worse and then his wife capped it all off by asking him why he didn’t just “curse God and die”!

Job was faithful in the face of losing everything and then endured all his well-meaning friends, commonly referred to as “Job’s comforters“, telling him that he must have lived in sin or displeased God in some way or this would not be happening to him. It wasn’t until Job, feeling lower than a snake’s belly, actually prayed for those “friends“!  That is when God put a halt to all that Satan had put on him. From that point his fortune began to rebuild, he had more children, he regained his properties, he had it all and on top of that, seven times more!

OK you’ve heard all those stories before, I have told you about them myself has it helped?

Are you disappointed in yourself?

In thinking of these things and feeling disappointed in myself the lyrics from a song way in the past began to circulate in the recesses of my brain until it came to the front. I Googled it and read the words, it begins: “I can’t count the times, because of me your heart’s been broken and I have seen you hurt because of angry words I’ve spoken But somehow you always knew when I hurt you I never meant to, We keep rising above it all like the sun on wings of morning and the hurt can’t make us fall we keep rising above it all.” 

Looking back over the past few months I wonder “is there something I need to make right?” Sometimes my mouth runs off while my brain is constipated, and I say things that “were better left unsaid”. Maybe we are all guilty of that one. How have I disappointed myself? I will plead the fifth for the moment,

but I wonder 

if I have disappointed me, what must God think of me? I have let Him down in so many ways, for one my attitude gets in my way, I allow hurts I have suffered to simmer and boil knowing that I shouldn’t allow it to happen and make bitterness live inside of me.

So now what?  

The bigger your faith grows, the smaller your giants look!

There are things in our life that need to be tackled and thrown to the ground, but from a natural standpoint, it seems impossible! I remember hiding my eyes under my covers one night when I was a little girl because there was a huge man in my room! He was as tall as the ceiling and I was so afraid that I wouldn’t open my eyes and look up until Mother came in to make sure I was covered and turned on the light! Turns out that the “man” was my dad’s coat, which was on a big wooden hanger, hanging on my door! It was a simple thing, but to a little girl it looked like a scary monster!

The shepherd David had protected his flock of sheep from invading bears, lions and probably ravening wolves! The practice he got and the strength he gained by fighting and defeating those wild animals gave him the courage he needed to fight Goliath the giant.

Fear is Faith perverted, it makes the smallest problems seem huge, but when you can give it to God, He is able to “bring it down to size“!

Hebrews 11:1-3 The fundamental fact of existence is that this trust in God, this faith, is the firm foundation under everything that makes life worth living. It’s our handle on what we can’t see. The act of faith is what distinguished our ancestors, set them above the crowd. By faith, we see the world called into existence by God’s word, what we see created by what we don’t see.

To have perfect faith, you have to become like a child in that a child believes everything you tell him! If you hide your face behind your hand, then pop out and say BOO, he really is surprised because he really thought you were gone! If you tell him there is a Santa he will defend that jolly old Saint to all of his non-believing friends. We have to believe God with the same childlike tenacity!

Verses 5-6 of Hebrews 11 says, By an act of faith, Enoch skipped death completely. “They looked all over and couldn’t find him because God had taken him.” We know on the basis of reliable testimony that before he was taken “he pleased God.” It’s impossible to please God apart from faith. And why? Because anyone who wants to approach God must believe both that he exists and that he cares enough to respond to those who seek him.

Job retained his faith in God when was tried! He suffered the loss of his family and his properties, plus he was covered with boils! He sat on a dung heap and scraped himself with a broken piece of pottery, just trying to feel better. He went from bad to worse and then his wife capped it all off by asking him why he didn’t just “curse God and die”!

Job was faithful in the face of losing everything and then endured all his well-meaning friends, commonly referred to as “Job’s comforters“, telling him that he must have lived in sin or displeased God in some way or this would not be happening to him. It wasn’t until Job, feeling lower than a snake’s belly, actually prayed for those “friends“!  That is when God put a halt to all that Satan had put on him. From that point his fortune began to rebuild, he had more children, he regained his properties, he had it all and on top of that, seven times more!

OK you’ve heard all those stories before, I have told you about them myself has it helped?

Are you disappointed in yourself?

In thinking of these things and feeling disappointed in myself the lyrics from a song way in the past began to circulate in the recesses of my brain until it came to the front. I Googled it and read the words, it begins: “I can’t count the times, because of me your heart’s been broken and I have seen you hurt because of angry words I’ve spoken But somehow you always knew when I hurt you I never meant to, We keep rising above it all like the sun on wings of morning and the hurt can’t make us fall we keep rising above it all.” 

Looking back over the past few months I wonder “is there something I need to make right?” Sometimes my mouth runs off while my brain is constipated, and I say things that “were better left unsaid”. Maybe we are all guilty of that one. How have I disappointed myself? I will plead the fifth for the moment,

but I wonder 

if I have disappointed me, what must God think of me? I have let Him down in so many ways, for one my attitude gets in my way, I allow hurts I have suffered to simmer and boil knowing that I shouldn’t allow it to happen and make bitterness live inside of me.

So now what?  

Climb up on God’s lap and look down at your giant problems, you will find they look a lot smaller from up there… and when you see yourself through the eyes of God I can promise you will not be disappointed any longer.

6 Replies to “things look smaller from up here…”

  1. I spend so much time with kids. I have so many now who think I am Pops and have no other idea. We have our little antagonisms every day, but the trust and NEED there is total. If I were going into a burning building to save one of them, the others would follow just to be with me. They might be scared, but the don’t know life without me nor want it.

    I sit here and analyze everything about Jesus and every bit of my faith. Surely that can’t be wrong, but it somehow isnt really right either.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good morning to you Mr. Agent X Sir… I have thought and thought and wondered and I cannot think of one reason why it would be wrong to ponder, analyze anything and everything about your faith and everything about Jesus. You are a person with a lot of responsibilities and you take care of each child according to their needs, isn’t that so? Remember the man who told Jesus, “I am a man of authority, I tell one to go and he goes and another to come and he comes, all you have to do is to send your word to heal him…” so take a lesson from that, He is the heavenly Father Who looks over us all. Think about this, He loves me as much as He loves YOU… we are a great distance from one another yet He sees us both and loves us equally, just believe that, period. Your heart is full of good things that you want to accomplish, maybe you feel overwhelmed at times, He knows, He knows.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I sensed that my comment was possibly a bit incomplete when I left it. I am juggling things recently, so I just let it go without giving it all my thought.

    Not that my complete thoughts would change your response to mine, but it might.

    It was a paragraph you placed in the midst of your post that got my juices flowing. Here is the bit:

    To have perfect faith, you have to become like a child in that a child believes everything you tell him! If you hide your face behind your hand, then pop out and say BOO, he really is surprised because he really thought you were gone! If you tell him there is a Santa he will defend that jolly old Saint to all of his non-believing friends. We have to believe God with the same childlike tenacity!

    I give a lot of thought to those ideas myself and have written at least two or three posts on peek-A-boo and image bearing. Thereis a LOT there to be considered.

    I hoped, in my comment, to illustrate something of a paradox, as I see it. Lot’s of Christians approach it, I think, in a couple of main ways, and possibly some lesser ways sometimes too, but I always come away a bit less than satisfied by the conventional wisdom on it.

    Probably the most popular approach is to talk about “head knowledge” vs. “heart love” for God. I don’t know where it originated, but when I was a young man in the 90s and coming back to church from a “back slide” (as they say), there was a sermon/slogan going around that got very popular for a while: DON”T MISS HEAVEN BY 18 INCHES. The point being that the average length of space between the average human head and heart is 18 inches, and that some people just “over think” things.

    Hmmm…

    We might call it a paralysis of analysis.

    But we might also call it loving the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul and all your MIND. (There CANT be anything wrong with THAT)

    Still, there seems to be a paradox – either that or a complete and very common misunderstanding.

    Become like a child. The kingdom of God is made up of such as these.

    So what is THAT about at root?

    The smaller the child, the more vulnerable and the more humble, and the more in need of milk and not meat…

    Hmmm…

    There we go again.

    Hmmm…

    Some things seem tangled up.

    I remember my dad as a young preacher reciting a story many times about his training as an evangelist in school. Keep in mind, my faith heritage (denomination – except in the old days we were dead set against using that word for ourselves) was a sect – a very much uncooperative, nonecumenical sect. This is the group that trained my dad. That hard edge has eroded over the last 5 decades, but there are still pockets and remnants of it within our ranks. But check out my dad’s story FROM WITHIN this mentality.

    He recites how he and a couple of students were tasked with reaching out and setting up Bible studies with college students at the local university. They found a young, newly married couple who were interested and welcomed these boys into their home. (I am sure I will botch the details, but that shouldn’t be too problematic). The man was (had been) Baptist. The woman was (had been Catholic.) To my dad and the boys, neither of these experiences were of much or any benefit. To our heritage, both churches were just hell-bound sinners.

    So, dad and the boys start working through their little step-by-step, pre-programmed, formulaic presentation. They basically pick apart Evolution and inch their way through all the things wrong with these poor people’s weatherbeaten faith. (I am already wondering how this was relevant to their “problem” – but I am pretty far removed from that day too… so… back to Dad’s recitation.)

    So, after they get a good steam up and have this poor couple twisted in knots and spiritual pretzels, the young man finally bursts into tears and exclaims, “All I know is that I love Jesus.”

    Dad claims that the moment this happened, he realized he did not really know what he was doing. He tried to politely extricate himself from the disaster. Got back to class the next week and had a whole new set of questions for his teachers and fellow students. Didn’t know what it was he did wrong, but was sure he had done something very wrong, alright.

    I am describing various versions and angels on pretty much the same problem.

    I expect that the HUMILITY we bring to the exchange is of paramount importance. We absolutely must be intellectually humble. But even that notion sets us up, I think, with a number of ideas that are not exactly accurate. Nevertheless, I think this is a main key, if not THE key, to resolving things.

    You bring up the centurion/benefactor who summons Jesus for help with his sick servant. The beauty of this man’s story is his humility. He is rich and powerful and there is every indication that he would NOT in fact love Jesus or heed him. But… the man has this remarkable humility despite the other indicators, and his humility over rides the other parts of his story that normally push and pull other people out of kilter with Jesus. Jesus pauses to remark on this man’s humble faith too. Luke especially, in my view, does a masterful job of stringing various kinds of people through the narrative to step up and have encounters with Jesus which highlight their humility (or lack thereof) as being the hinge upon which Jesus is accepted and heeded properly or not.

    Whatever else, this is the paradox I personally deal with quite often. Perhaps, I am missing something. Or perhaps I am on to something. But this is a bit more to the way I process it.

    Your words about the kids hit a nerve with me right there. I look at the love my kids have for me, and I of course come to them as one SENT from Jesus to bring his healing touch to their lives. There is a bond between us of which I am not worthy. I have a little girl who lights up when I walk in the room! If I am gone all day or for a day or two, she gets anxious. I get so richly celebrated everytime I return.

    She sees Jesus in me. She feels HIS love through me. That is what image bearing theology is all about. I stand on holy ground and play this role in which I am not worthy or prepared. But she comes to it all as a child. Completely trusting and needy. She doesn’t analyze one whit of it. She calls Jesus Pops.

    I think too of the woman at the well that meets Jesus in John. She even sits to discuss Bible with him. Her “church” reads the Bible one way, and the Jews read it another. She actually dithers about this stuff a bit. But she does not leave that encounter with a better understanding of some Greek participle or a hermaneutical construct of systematic theology. Neither do those boys who drop their nets and follow.

    She gets twitterpated, if you ask me, and Jesus talking about LIVING WATER comes off almost like the innuendo of a bad country song! She basically is a whore… she reminds me of a couple “ladies” I used to know when I worked for General Motors so many years ago. They had reputations around the breakroom! Pretty much everyone knew their intimate business and plenty had taken their turns with them. Sad! This woman reminds me of them – especially the one named Mary. I pittied Mary. I think she was “looking for love” in all the wrong places and in all the wrong ways, but I really think that is what she wanted. This woman, after having this “theological discussion” with a Stranger she doesn’t recognize at the well (about as mysterious as the Stranger of Luke 24, I think), she runs back into the village where she meets so many of the men she has had her search for LOVE among and tells them she might have met THE ONE. Her evidence? Not her new understanding of that Greek participle… NO. He told me everything I ever did.

    Hmmm…

    I think I would have been intimidated by that. Not her. Not those who come to see.

    What is it that brings them to Jesus?

    It’s something very child like, something very humble. There is a connection established there on almost blind faith.

    It grows to something more mature very quickly, but none of the Bible arguing they might be ready to do brings them to Jesus at all. But after the village elders come and meet Jesus and welcome him into their town, the later report that at first they came because of her testimony, but now they know Jesus on their own terms.

    Hmmm…

    Thinking on this just doesn’t seem to get to the bottom of it, and yet you cant seem to get there without thinking on this stuff either.

    A paradox… in my view. One I am working on…

    Thanx so much for the post.

    And by the way… I have been interupted ten times trying to type this. I sure hope it is coherent now…

    X

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Beautifully written in spite of undetected interruptions 😀 You are the ultimate seeker. I appreciate you taking the time to think on these things and share them with this fellow seeker. 🙏

      Liked by 1 person

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