Just Be

Mar 9, 2020 3436

Just Be

Despite what some might tell you, God doesn’t want to turn you into someone you’re not. Basically, he wants you to just be.

Our society teaches you to find your identify in what you do. Have you fallen into that trap? You define yourself by your profession, by the social circles you frequent, or by how the material possessions you have accumulated.

The religious version of this is an even more dangerous error: the idea that your standing with God depends on your performance. And so your life turns into a cycle of endless frustration, and eventually apathy or even despair, as you try to “do” better, for the sake of your relationship with God.

To know who God is, you must be still.

But our identity is not in what we do, but in who we are. I once heard someone say, “That’s way we’re human beings and not human doings.”

What God wants is for you to just be: to just be the best version of you, the version of you that will always make you happiest. This isn’t something that you strive for. It’s something that you achieve by trying harder. This is just you at your best. This is you relaxing into who he made you. This is you surrendering your striving to him.

To some people, this might sound like some kind of eastern mysticism. It isn’t. This isn’t about emptying yourself into nothingness. It isn’t about finding your true self deep within you. This is about ceasing your striving to become, so that you creates space in your life for God.

Too often we want to help God along, as if he needed our help! The best thing that any of us can do to cooperate with God is to cease our selfish and misguided striving and simply rest in him in trust.

What God wants is for you to just be: to just be the best version of you, the version of you that will always make you happiest.

Moses is a case in point. After living in Egypt for the first 40 years of his life, he thought he would take matters into his own hands to help God free his people from slavery. So he murdered an Egyptian slave-driver. God had to put him in the desert for the next 40 years of his life so he could learn to just be and to let God work in his own way.

It’s a similar story with Abraham. He decided to help God fulfil the promise of s son, first by adopting his servant Eliezer, and then by having a son with his wife-s servant Hagar. After that, God gave him circumcision as a sign for Abraham not to work in his own flesh. And then, because he believed, and simply rested in the Lord, God credited his faith as righteousness.

Psalm 46:10 says,

Be still and know that I am God.

To know who God is, you must be still. Beyond all of our religious doings, we need to find to sit before our God and just be. To open our lives up before him and to simply listen and rest in him.

But when you surrender your life to God, he will free you up to just be. Yes, you will become loving, and humble and obedient. That’s because you will reflect the beautiful attributes of the character of Jesus. Because that was who you were always meant to be. And your life will become the greatest joy.

Eliezer Gonzalez

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Stojan Ninkovic

Mar 15, 2020

Response to Tom Durst. Your premise that since we are made in God’s Image and God is love therefore love is our core identity is a New Age teaching that’s gathered a lot of followers through the years. Our nature was ruined by one man (Adam) and was restored by One Man (Jesus). Why did Jesus say ‘you MUST be born again?’ Pretty obviously because ‘you MUST be born again. Until one is born again and has received the Spirit of God into their heart (I will give them a new heart and a new Spirit Ezekiel 36:26) they are dead in their sins and alienated from God. Sure He is close to them since He is Omnipotent but they are alienated from God Colossians 1:21 and Jesus is the Way back to becoming a new creation with a new heart and a new identity. You are correct about having a core identity (in His image) at first birth...however its the second birth that restores what we lost in the first birth. The story of the prodigal son is a good lesson in this. The son was born a son indeed but forfeited the blessing of dwelling in his fathers house when he chose to move away into ‘the far country’ and eventually with the pigs. He realized one day that his nature was not one of a pig but of a son. He rose and went back to his father with contrition. The father ran through the small village to wrap his son in his arms before the village folks could stone him for his disrespect of his father. That’s why the father ran. You have to understand the story in light of the culture then. Yes the father called him ‘my son’ though he smelled rather bad. He was a son by nature though fallen. You are correct that we belong with the father since we are made in His image. However one must awaken to the reality that we are far from God then decide to make our way back to Him that is an intrinsic part of the New Birth. That process is like birth pangs. But when one is born again there is a whole new reality we are welcomed into through the Cross of Christ. We are welcome at his table though we have made a mess of life. I asked a fellow I visited in jail once ‘ when is a thief no longer a thief?’ Not when he’s in jail he replied because they steal from each other in jail! I answered him ‘ a thief is no longer a thief when he’s something else. This is why Jesus said to a religious leader Nicodemus ‘you MUST be born again’. Real life begins when we are born again 2Corinthians 5:17 therefore IF anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: the old has gone, the new is here! NIV. Since I’m Croatian by first birth I play on the words that I’m a new Croatian! But really Tom, its the goodness (love) of God that leads us to repentance. There must be an understanding of the difference between the two - dwelling in the pigpen or dwelling in the fathers house. As it was for the prodigal son, the choice is left to us which will be our experience now and forevermore.

Tom Durst

Mar 15, 2020

We all have one identity in common--our true being is in the fact that we were created in God's image and likeness (Genesis 1:26-27). THAT is our true identity and not anything in the realm of human perception such as you mention in your article. Since God IS love and we are created in His image and likeness love is at the center of our being. However, most people aren't aware of this so instead of living in the light of who they really are as beings of love they live in darkness and in a sense of separation. They suffer according to their rejection or simply neglect to walk in the light of God. This is how I've come to see it now for many years.

Stojan Ninkovic

Mar 15, 2020

One of my happiest moments is when the Bible is open before me and my journal. Its when I can share my burdens with the Lord and He responds by sharing with me a message from His Word. Sometimes I get up in the middle of the night for this inter action with God. Once many years ago I felt a need to walk alone with God through farmland around our little country church. There used to be farms in the area but the government expropriated them and razed them to the ground to prepare the land for a new airport for Toronto. As I talked and walked with God that morning I noticed what looked like a small plank sticking out of a clump. I lifted it and turned it over and there in old time caligraphy the words ' Alone with God' white on a black background were written. The glass was broken but I've since replaced it and there it is on my wall above me even as I write now. What a neat confirmation that walking with God brings as much joy to His heart as it does to our hearts! I remember Des used to say 'what is a walk but a continually interrupted falling'.

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