God is not your God

We usually invent God. We have a tendency to create our own “Gods” to fit our selfish concept of what life is about.  We tend to fabricate a divine being so that we can justify our individual ambitions and world views.  If I am usually angry or dissatisfied with life, I create a God that punishes and brings justice.  If I am grateful, I create a merciful and forgiving God.  If I am materialistic and ambitious, I create a God who provides. If I have little interest in the meaning of life,  I create a distant God who does not require much of my attention.  Instead of  searching God with no prior assumption, we prefer to have a concept of what God should be and then live based on this assumption.  We are usually too full of our own interpretations and preconceived ideas of the meaning of life.  We try to manipulate God.

In Taoism, the word “wu” refers to emptiness, or not having desires or the state of mind characterized by simplicity, quietude, patience, frugality and restraint. It is an emotional or psychological stance associated with the lack of worldly desire.  To desire to have a lot, and to consume as much as possible, creates a lack of space for God. Therefore, we create a God that accommodates to our own selfish approach of a full life, according to our definition of life.  But God should define us, not the other way around.

Being empty handed brings out a more accurate experience of God.  What do I mean by this?  Jesus taught that “blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.”  In other words, erase our pre-conception of what life should be, and fill ourselves with the real meaning of Life and God.  I acknowledge this is easier said than done, which is why Jesus also described it as the “narrow path.”  David wrote “The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want” (Psalm 23:1)  In the second letter to  Corinthians (3:5), Paul teaches that only God makes us competent.  What makes us rich is not our materialistic possessions, but the simplicity and humility that only the true God gives.

I recently heard the news that one of my distant aunts is in a comma.  She is dying.  This kind of news reminds me of the limitations of this life.  It makes me wonder even more “what is all of this really about? Why do we live to eventually die at the end?”  What am I supposed to think? Why is God unfair?  God must have a purpose?  If I have expected God to be merciful, I would be disappointed.  If I have assumed God to be punitive, then I question why is He punishing us?  If I thought of God as distant, it would distant God even more from me.  What am I to think about God in difficult situations like this?  Can I simply not judge God at all and accept it as it is?  If we practice  being “poor in spirit” and “emptiness”, I think the answer is yes.

Which kind of God do you believe in?  What kind of world view defines your God? Do you dare empty yourself, deny yourself, and allow God to define your life?


About Noel

I am a person who has realized that the teachings of Jesus are centralized in the genuine care and service of others. I have evolved from fundamentalism to a moderate spiritual approach. I am a reflecting person who has grown to not fear doubt but to embrace it as a means to growth and increasing closeness to God. View all posts by Noel

6 responses to “God is not your God

  • Marianne Lordi

    Hi Noel, I know that it seems like life is just dark and bleak with little hope. The truth is that believers have every hope to trust that Christ is coming soon to make all things new. This earth is not heaven! Sin came into this world and for that reason made us enemies of God. When Christ paid the price for us to be with him forever, he gave us a hope that never dies. Too many people judge God based on what is going on in their lives. Most have nothing or little to do with God until they have a crisis in their life. Then they accuse God of not being with them.

    Noel, as a believer, you know that Christ is working out your life. Even when the storms overshadow you, he is still in the midst of it all and bringing you closer to him. He allows trials in your life to take you from where you are to where he is! He never leaves you. It is hard to go through a struggle but we know that these painful times are molding and shaping us into the image of Christ. God has authority over all things so your problems are not beyond his ability to help. He is with you.

    The good news is that God will burden hearts to pray for each other. I am praying for you. Keep growing and trusting as you have been. Somehow it is going to all be used for your good.

  • Cindy Holman

    Great article, Noel. Thanks 🙂

  • Christopher C. Randolph

    Excellent questions, Noel.

    God Bless,


  • jasonswartz

    It is when you leave yourself at the gate that all others can see themselves in you, and you can feel all others as yourself.

    I was a slave to my Ego that sneaky selfish will to receive only for my glory. Its an endless pit of emptiness and suffering. I figured if I have to be a servant to either my Ego or God…..it may as well be God. So I guess may service to God started out somewhat egoistic too, but he’s a good master and just working for Him started to change my nature.

    We must suffer the burden of Heaven with Joy, knowing that the Fathers plan is Perfect. With God all things are possible. If he saved a wretch like me then everyone else is safe LOL

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