Is Your Vision Of God Too Small?

There’s a lot going on in our world that is hard to take in. It may seem that things look hopeless. It’s easy to get down and feel dread in your life. The earthquake in Turkey & Syria was devastating with so many lives lost.

We’re shooting balloons of some unidentified objects out of the air making it feel like a sci fi flick.

We nit pick over obscure things. Sometimes we can’t see our own faults because we’re so busy criticizing others. Haven’t we learned anything from the Pharisees and Sadducees? The leaders of the faith had it all wrong and we might just be worried about all the wrong things, too.

It’s time we go back to the basics. We all need grace. We need to receive it as well as give it. We can sit behind the door waiting for grace to show up or we can knock at the door waiting to share grace with someone who thinks they don’t deserve it. When all along we’ve got to realize that we don’t deserve it either.

When we look at the book of Isaiah chapter 53, we are reminded of the torture Jesus went through on our behalf before we even accepted him. His own people turning their backs on him while he bore the brunt of sins that were ours.

But chapter 54 brings us hope and a picture of what is to come.

We still have reason to sing praise!

We begin our church services with singing. But is that all it is? Are we just warming people up for the sermon? Preparing them to hear the message?

No! When we are singing, that’s now of the ways that we praise God for all that he’s done. He created us to bring him glory! It’s not about singing your favorite song (or mine), it’s not about the band on the stage, the fog in the room, or the lights that make it seem like a rock concert. It’s not about whether we sings hymns or current songs. And sometimes we pick those songs apart because there’s one line in there that bothers us.

I think God looks at the heart of the worshipper. I don’t think he’s necessarily bothered by any of the things mentioned above. God’s got this…and we give him praise!

We give him praise and we need to prepare for the blessings he wants to give us. I grew up in a very reserved church. No clapping, no piano, or band…just a song leader and a congregation that sang their hearts out. That isn’t good or bad, however, I was never exposed to some of the ways that we can express our worship. We never raised a hand to God, reaching for our Father out of love and adoration. That just wasn’t my experience.

But a few weeks ago our praise team was able to attend a worship leader’s conference. It’s the first time in a long time that I’ve been able to worship without feeling the pressure of leading a congregation. And I took advantage of the opportunity to let go and raise my hands. It seemed so natural there because almost everyone else was doing the same.

I love leading my church in worship, but as a leader I have a long way to go. But, I’ve got good people around me, working alongside and encouraging our team. The Holy Spirit is there, too, leading the way, being our helper just like he was sent here to do.

“Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back;”

Isaiah 54:2a

The church is described as a tent here because we’re not home yet. Just like the tabernacle that the Israelites took with them in the desert. It was temporary, but God was with them.

Why do we enlarge our tent and stretch the curtains wide? Because we need to think BIGGER! We tend to want to keep God in a box and make him what we think he’s supposed to be. But our thoughts and expectations are much smaller than the blessings he wants to put on us!

The sign in front of our church reads, “The place to be in 2023”. Why? Because it’s a declaration that Christ is our focus. It’s time to let him out of his box. Our vision of him is too small. What could he do with our little church if every one of our people realized the potential we have for sharing the gospel? I think it might enlarge the place of our “tent” and we’d have to stretch the curtains wide. Why? Because we would love all people regardless of who they are. Sinners would feel welcome and want to know about the joy we want to share with them.

Church should be the safest place in the world for sinners to show up!

We can’t hold back the news of the gospel! We must share it with everyone.

“Lengthen you cords, strengthen your stakes.”

Isaiah 54:2b

We need to grow in love. God led them with cords of human kindness. That’s what we need to do with others. They are already hurting, they don’t need condemnation from us.

When we strengthen our stakes, we grow in wisdom. God will bless our efforts abundantly. We need that big tent to receive all God has for us.

We’ve formed rigid lines that limit God and that’s not what we want to do. We want to praise God for who he is and because he is worthy. The blessings he brings are the result of who he is.

This was a refreshing look at the future and has me excited to see the work God will be doing in 2023!

In Faith,


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