Gardendale Nazarene

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Christmas | Pastor's Blog | Gardendale Nazarene


Is your God too Small?

One of my favorite writers tells a story about when he was a chaplain at a university in England. Every year, he would meet the new freshman and introduce himself. Many of the students would say upon hearing he was the chaplain, “You won’t see much of me, I don’t believe in god.”

He developed a standard answer to this statement. “Oh, that’s interesting; which god is it you don’t believe in?”

You see, most people think the term ‘god’ means the same thing. He writes, “…they would stumble out a few phrases about the god they said they did not believe in: a being who lived up the in the sky, looking down disapprovingly at the world, occasionally ‘intervening’ to do miracles, sending bad people to hell while allowing good people to share his heaven.”

To this answer, he would reply, “Well, I’m not surprised you don’t believe in that god. I don’t believe in that god either. I believe in the God I see revealed in Jesus of Nazareth.”

In John 14, we read about a conversation between Jesus and his apostles. “Philip said to him, ‘Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Have I been with you so long, and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority, but the Father who dwells in me does his works.’” –John 14:8-10 ESV

I think we fall into the same trap that snared those college freshmen. Our picture of God is too small. When we boil down what we believe, it doesn’t sound that different than their spy-in-the-sky.

We are six days away from our celebration of Christ’s birth.
We are six days away from our celebration of the Word becoming flesh.
We are six days away from our celebration of our Savior’s arrival.

We are six days away from our celebration that the world will never be the same because of a child born in Bethlehem.

We are six days away from our celebration of our God sending His Son and in doing so, we get a glimpse into the very heart of God.

We are six days away from our celebration of a God who yearns for His people to be free from sin and alive in Him.

Merry Christmas from the Parrish home to your home. We pray that your celebration this Christmas is filled with the hope and wonder of a God who is too big to describe, yet is completely fulfilled in the cries of a child that holy morning.

Pastor John

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