Life: the adventure that happens between being a twinkle in someone’s eye and the point of physical death.  We talk about eternal life.  We debate when life begins.  But the bottom line remains the same: before we die, we live.  And living happens in “life”—this thing we are all working through as we walk the roads before us.

As you embark on this study, know this: God may not be Who you think He is.  We will use scripture as our guide and learn what He has to teach us at this point in time.  But please understand, He may not be Who you anticipated.

In preparation for the rest of this study, it is important to establish a baseline.

Write out three of your favorite verses, including references.

Now, list out three of your favorite worship/praise songs, noting the lyrics that particularly stand out to you.

Review the verses and song lyrics.  What is the central focus of each of them?

In those verses and lyrics, how many mentions are there of God, Jesus, and/or Holy Spirit?

In those verses and lyrics, how many mentions are there of “me, my, I” where the pronoun refers to you?

In the mentions of God, Jesus, or the Spirit, what is highlighted?  His blessing to you?  How He works on your behalf?  How you feel about Him?

Look again at your analysis of the verses and lyrics.  Are your favorites focused on God?  Or focused on what you get from God?  This might be an uncomfortable question.  It might even seem absurd.  But the true reflection of your favorite verses and lyrics show how you interact with God at this time.  It can change.  However, change comes after being honest about where you currently sit.

Are your favorites focused on God?  Or are they focused on what you get from God?

What reaction are you experiencing to this honest reflection?
What is God trying to tell you?

The ideation of this study has taken several turns before hitting the press.  From the idea that we must admit that life sometimes hurts beyond all we could imagine, to the idea that life can seem wonderful at times, to somewhere in between.  And just like the life we are all living, this study has bent and changed and grown, and morphed into something different than was originally imagined.

The bottom line is this: life changes—sometimes unexpectedly, sometimes in planned patterns.  But life changes.  We ask questions like:

  • What will happen if…
  • When will God…
  • Where is/was God when…
  • Why did God allow…
  • How will God…

The truthful answer to each of these questions is this: I don’t know.  The reality of these questions is there are very few of those questions we can actually answer when it comes to God.

The truth is this: God desires just that we know Him.  Not His actions, not His benefits to us—that we know Him.  Yes, His actions can reveal parts of Who He is. And yes, His benefits to us can encourage our faith.  However, the bottom line of the Bible is that we may know the answer to the question: “Who is God?”

Life happens.  To get us through, we need to live with a better grasp of Who God is.  When that becomes central, the benefits and blessings will actually far outnumber what you can imagine right now.  Because by knowing Who God is, we can see Him better in all that happens around us.  And seeing Him in everything is a greater blessing than everything else combined.

Amen, and amen!

One comment on “life happens: introduction…

  1. Pingback: Who is God when life happens? « groundswell ministries

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