Perhaps it is the way our consumer society sets us up to keep expecting newer, better, faster. I find it creeps into our faith a lot. Christians everywhere seem almost desperate to find and grasp new ‘revelations’ that suddenly become the overriding meaning and truth. You have probably heard some of these:
Often, the word ‘revelation’ is used to describe impressions for individuals and situations, at other times, for new insights and angles of Scripture. These ideas become so mega- in scope; they become the lens we see life and do life. Sometimes, we cling to these ‘revelations’ rather than to God himself.
I have personally been moved, ministered and encouraged by some of these understandings. In some ways, they have shed light and added dimension. But what troubles me is how Christians run after these things as if they are new, improved truths.
In actuality, each of these ideas is but a mere handle to Truth. They therefore act like ledges that allow us some grip so we can climb up and peer into Truth Himself.
The human heart hungers for truth, for God and will seek, search and devise truths to make sense of life. In a way, this is inevitable and each generation must find the language that frames Truth so that it can be understood.
But God’s Word actually tells us that Truth must be given to us. It’s a gift. It began with God’s covenantal initiative and culminates in the Person of Truth: Jesus Christ.
So while we will continue to gather ideas, inter-relate them to life and maybe invent fancy words; this activity must be submitted to something more core, persistent and basic: a growing relationship with God; not with ideas or the leaders who come up with them.
This means that everything we hear, experience must serve our relationship with God: in what way does it grow our love for God, expressed in love for our fellow humans? This is after all, God’s grand agenda: to rescue and form a people who each have a vital relationship with Him which makes it possible for them to have genuine relationship and share in a mission together.
When we bear in mind God’s agenda, and recognize we are being invited though we do not merit it at all – we can see all of our frenetic activity through this lens. Therefore, if our love for a Great and Compassionate God does not deepen, our desire to trust and submit to Him does not increase, our willingness to lay down our lives and embrace His will does not grow stronger; then I think it’s all distraction. If it does not show up in time spent reading the Word, thinking about God’s thoughts, reaching out to others, then I think it’s all nervous rhetoric and cliché.
Honestly, if we get too comfortable with the Cross and are no longer captivated by this God-man, who is our Life, then we may have settled for something less.
“..but in these last days, God has spoken to us by His Son..The Son is the radiance of God’s glory, and the exact representation of His being..” Hebrews 1v2-3