Wednesday night Bible Study. We talked about how easy it is to read some books of the Bible and how difficult it is to push through the others, but how necessary both are.
“Right now I’m reading 2 Samuel,” my friend said. “People are slaughtering each other and it’s hard to find a loving God in that.”
I think it must be a very hard thing to read the entirety of the Bible if you are just looking for love. If you are looking for all of the traits of God you already find familiar. If you are trying to summarize Him, to tie Him nice and pretty with a bow.
“God is Love.”
You’ll find those words on wall plaques and church signs. You’ll hear them tumbling off the lips of Christians near and far. They’re the words we use to win others over—the first introduction to our beliefs. While they are not untrue, they are not the whole truth either.
Yes, God is Love, but that is not all He is.
Way back in the book of Exodus, God introduced Himself to Moses as I AM WHO I AM.
Not I AM LOVE. Not I AM JUSTICE. Not I AM PEACE or LIBERATION or FREEDOM THROUGH THE AGES. When the Creator of the universe elected to introduce Himself to a human being, He chose the title I AM.
It means nothing. It means everything. Even after years of pondering that statement, I struggle to understand it. I’ve never met anyone else who could introduce themselves simply as I AM.
But God is. He encompasses everything. More than love. More than justice. More than peace or liberation or freedom through the ages.
Today, as I consider the conversation from Wednesday night, I cannot help but think of how well my friend’s words fit not only 2 Samuel, but the world in which we live today.
“People are slaughtering each other. It’s hard to find a loving God in that.”
Maybe it’s also to find a just God or a peaceful God or even a God of liberation.
Maybe it’s just plain hard to find God. Period. Where is God in all of this?
My neighbors talk of the end times. They tell me I should be afraid. Afraid to go to concerts or conventions or, really, even to work. It’s a crazy world out there. Crazy people. Anything could happen.
But I’m not afraid. Even though I “should” be.
“For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” (2 Timothy 1:7)
So if you’re asking where God is, He’s right here. When Jesus ascended into heaven, He sent the Holy Spirit to dwell among His people.
Christians, you are not allowed to ask where God is in all of this; you should already know. He should already be present in your heart and in your home.
You don’t get to be the ones sitting inside, trembling in fear. You get to be the hands and feet of Jesus in a broken world. You get to be Love. You get to be Justice. You get to be Peace and Liberation and Freedom Through the Ages.
You get to be I AM.
And if the world still can’t see that a loving God exists, then we have failed them.
So, where are you taking God today?