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pursuing the upward call with fear and trembling

just a 44 year old man seeking to share my meanderings with the world at large or the blogosphere at small

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Fear of the Lord-God Is Love- A Tension???

I would love to be a Psalmist sometimes. Just bare my heart and soul openly to God wanting Him to hear even what i just could not communicate verbally. The Protestant Reformation was a very long time ago, yet it has held sway over Christianity ever since I would argue. John Calvin is one of the most renowned theologians of all time, he has a whole systematic theological system named after him for goodness sakes!!!! Although truth be told Augustinianism should be the real TULIP as Calvin was greatly influenced by Augustine but i digress. The thinking of Calvin and Luther have dominated Christianity across the ages, and it seems like a swelling of new reform is actially *emerging* (had ti use that specific word for fun) if you take a gander across the blogosphere,and amongst various communities all over the world.

Sin is defined as *missing the mark* Failing to reach Gods perfect holiness. Hmmmm, I wonder could finite beings who were made a lil lower than the angels ever honestly achieve that goal??? Is that really what God wants and has wanted??? Translators sure have done a sloppy job in all the versions of the Bible that exist. Perfect in what God had in mind was NOT sinless perfection but maturity. BIG DIFFERENCE!!!! How many sermons are preached with either the outright call or the glaring implication that we need to get around to being sinlessly perfect because God is fed up!!!! There is talk about Gods love and that we cant do anything to make Him love us anymore, and nothing we can ever do to make Him love us any less. Oh no???? Really??? What about willful sin after having repented and accepted Christ as Lord & Savior??? Can a *real christian* decide at times to shake their fist at God and choose to disobey Him??? Can a *real christian* find themselves caught up in struggles mentally,emotionally,physically and other ways that lead to them NOT loving God with their whole being absolutely 100%??? I can hear many of you saying to this, of course *real christians* will struggle and fail, they are human and imperfect. YES so true,but take a look at alot of teaching and preaching around the globe and a simmering message lies underneath warning that God wants you to get up to speed as soon as possible with living holy and righteously or wham God will lay the smack down on you. i think this comes as a response to a perceived *soft on sin* approach taken by many in the Church today.

The fear of the Lord. It is said to be the beginning of wisdom. Wisdom to avoid folly?? To escape foolishness and disasters of life and relationships??? Why are there so many who lean toward Gods judgment and wrath??? They focus on Gods power and His holiness, absolutely parts of His nature that deserve our devotion. The problem is when they overshadow His love and grace and make us feel as though He is just waiting for that slipup so He can use His power and justice to make us pay for our failure. I have posted in the past on the imbalance when grace and love are taken to extremes as well, this just happens to be whats itching for me right now.

i think alot of my fear of death comes from thoughts of things i dont want to consider. My battle with sex addiction,especially continuing despite being in ministry and having learned and grown so much in so many ways. Having times where I just am so lazy and want to shut off the world and escape. Times where I am so angry with myself and then at God for not giving me what i need to break free from the fears and addictive tendencies I fight day by day..The ways I feel and think how could i have chosen to live my life seeking to hecome like Jesus and exemplify His character but still have shadows at work where I do things that go against Him and His will??? Why is it I find pockets inside me that just fight like a dog wanting its bone to stay active no matter how hard i seek to remove them and commit more to God so i can be at rest in Him???

These are rhetorical questions as well as genuine ones. So much of what i write on here are the deepest parts of myself which only see expression in this way, because they are just not what passes for regular interaction. Blogging allows us a buffer to share things i think we would find to threatening face to face for fear of rejection,disapproval and a whole host of other things. God IS love and He IS holy and there is a uniformity in that truth which i seek to understand lil by lil more each day. Hope to hear anyones thoughts who pass on by here.


At 6:59 AM, Blogger Aphra said...

Not sure if this is totally relevant but it an idea I was thinking about yesterday- that a lot of sins are us trying to fill holes inside ourselves with something other than God's love.
Like alcoholism, porn, etc.
But then there is some stuff that is not sin, that is really the same thing, so I'm not sure if it could be used as a defineing rule.
I'm still pondering it...

At 8:21 PM, Blogger Awareness said...

Hey Robert....you always make me think when I visit you here and read your thoughts. I'm grateful that you are always so open and honest.

What comes to mind is the works of a psychologist named William Glasser...just google him and lots of his stuff will pop up for you to read if you're interested.

Anyways, Glasser talks about the fact that every single human being has 5 need area and all of our behaviour is our best attempt at fulfilling one or more of these needs. They are: Survival, Love and Belonging, Control/Empowerment/ Freedom and Fun. My needs are the same, but the amount I need of it is different than others.... So, for example, I have a high freedom need. I'm 48 and feel a strong desire to take on my own destiny, to take risks, to try new things. Because of that, the choices i make get wrapped up in fulfilling my need.

If someone has experienced a strong sense of abandonment or rejection, they may have a strong need for more love and belonging. Hence, their behaviour will reflect this.

Like Aphra mentions in her comment, we often try to fill the holes inside ourselves with actions that very well might be considered sinful. We are doing the best we can at any given moment to fulfill our NEEDS.

God does love us unconditionally and that very idea warms me to my core.... He has also given us the gift of free will to make choices and to learn from them. Bless His eternal wisdom.

Hope you are mighty fine my friend....good to know you're out ther thinking, living, loving, feeling and doing....!!! Never forget what a gift you are.


At 5:53 PM, Blogger Aphra said...

I wrote a bit more on my thoughts on the above on my blog


Would it be ok if I did a link to your blog on my blog?

At 11:47 PM, Blogger Robert said...

Aphra- absolutely!!! I will go over and read your thoughts now thanks for coming back and letting me know :)


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