Author or editor, which will it be?

If any of you are like me, sometimes you become exhausted with how difficult it can be taking things you know to be true, in theory, and connecting them to your heart.  You can know something in your head, but that doesn’t mean you believe it with all that you are.  I wrestle with this constantly. I know things about God, about his love, grace, and mercy, yet somehow they feel distant.  In my head I know he is good, faithful, and just, but sometimes those words lose meaning as I repeat them over and over and still struggle to experience them.  

This week at church my pastor made an analogy about how our understanding of God as the author of our lives and our salvation is often replaced with an understanding of him as an editor.  I realize many of the truths of God and his promises for me feel distant because I have failed to see God for who he truly is.  Instead I have been chasing the ideas of a god who conforms to my will.  I look at God as an editor, though he is an author.  I look at God as a safety net or a “plan b” for when my plans fall apart, not as the Savior of the world through whom all things were created, through whom all things are held together, and to whom I should surrender everything with joy.  Somehow I have created a perfect world in my mind, and I only want to give enough control and influence to God for revision and minor corrections.  Somehow the knowledge that God is good, sovereign, and that he loves me has again missed my heart and I remain unable to see that his plans are far better than mine will ever be.

It is for seasons like this I am grateful for the community that God places in my life to remind me his plans for us are so good.  More and more I realize this is not something unique to me and my story, but really anyone who follows Jesus is brought to a place where they realize the plans God has for them really are good, but they are also impossible to attain without him.  We so badly want to rely on our own reservoirs of strength and love, and the more God calls us to follow we see how limited our resources are.  This story we continue to write with us living out of our own strength, will not simply be edited by our Lord of infinite strength, love, and mercy.  Nor will he be harsh and condemning when we see him as he is, the author.  Instead it will be his great joy to write and rewrite our plans giving us unlimited access to his kingdom and his love.

I think for us at Switchboard, we are learning this as God continues to reveal his heart for us and for our organization.  Sometimes trying to keep things simple, “nothing fancy… just Jesus”, can become quite complex when we let good things take our focus from the things God longs to give us if we would just open our hands to receive them.  Sure, life in Christ is more than simply opening our hands, but that is where it starts.  It starts by seeing, and believing, Jesus is who he says he is.  The rest is a beautiful journey in which Jesus doesn’t just command our surrender, but he shows us why our surrender becomes the safest and most satisfying place in the entire universe.  And although it is safe and satisfying, it will seem like the most unnatural, backward, and upside down journey.  At times it will be exhausting, frustrating, and painful, but it will be so good and so full of life changing grace, radical forgiveness, and unthinkable redemption that we on our own could never dream up.  It will remind you his plans for us will always be far greater than we could ever write into the scripts of our lives, if we would only see him as he is.  

As things in Uganda continue, and as things in Nashville develop, this is our song and prayer and we invite you to join us in the journey if you haven’t already.  Join us in praying that we would see Jesus for who he is, not who we project him to be, and that we would be obedient to follow him has he writes the greatest and most adventurous love story we’ll ever know.  He is the author, he is the perfecter, he is the Lord and he is good.  May we rest in our knowledge of who he is, and who we are in him.

See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.  The reason why the world does not know us is that in did not know him.  Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. –I John 3:1-2