The Most Important Thing You Need to Know About God
How do you picture God?
Who do you see when you pause to pray?
A fireman who will put out the fires in your life?
A genie or fairy godmother who will grant your every wish?
A judge who will punish you when you fail?
A hard to please
An administrator who makes decisions from a distance?
Is He intimate or impersonal?
The truth is … how you and I picture God will deeply influence not only our relationship with Him but it will have a huge impact on the way we live our lives.
Let me explain…
For most of my life, I pictured God watching me from afar … blessing good behavior and withholding blessings for bad behavior. When things weren’t going well, I believed I needed to make life adjustments so I could once again please God and earn His favor.
I believed that “God is love” and “Jesus loves me.” I’d learned both things as a young child in Sunday School.
And because of those childhood lessons, I believed God loved me so much He gave Jesus as the sacrifice for my sins. I believed that it was through faith in Jesus, my eternal future was and is secure. All true!
This is how God loved the world: He gave His one and onlyJohn 3:16
Son,so that everyone who believes in H imwill not perish but have eternal life.
The problem … I was focusing on the eternal message and missing out on the things God was offering me every single day.
I didn’t understand the intimate personal relationship He wanted with me.
Yet, this is how intimate and personal God is … He gave my childhood pastor the following verse for me.
“Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends.”Revelation 3:20
He told me as a child, that He wanted a personal friendship with me. Unfortunately, I didn’t get the message!
It took me another 40+ years to finally understand the truth … and in all honesty, I’m still a work in progress.
Recently, Rev asked me, “What’s
I have to admit, my voice cracked and my eyes filled with tears as I started to put my feelings into words. In fact, my greatest concern as I type this
♥ I missed out on experiencing God’s peace because I believed the enemy’s lie that I must obey God perfectly to gain His pleasure.
But the truth…
The Lord takes pleasure in those who fear Him, in those who hope in His steadfast love.Psalm 147:11
♥ I missed out on God’s courage and strength because I believed the enemy’s lie that I was on my own for day to day living.
But God’s Word says…
God is our refuge and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble.Psalm 46:1
So, the most important thing I want you to know about God from my story is…
I want you to know how very much Your Father loves you and wants to give you everything you need to live each day.
I want you to know He meant it when He said…
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord, your God is with you wherever you go.Joshua 1:9
For too many years, I missed the promise part of that verse…
I was not strong and courageous.
I was afraid of:
- Death (my own or a loved one’s)
- Not being good enough
- Not being loved
- Not being a good mom
- Getting lost or losing my child in a crowd
- Not being in control of my weight, my health … my life
It wasn’t pretty!
On the outside, the picture looked good but on the inside I was a mess. I craved strength, courage, peace, contentment, and a whole host of other things God promises in His Word … but I wasn’t willing to surrender control of my life.
Because of another verse:
In this world you will have trouble.John 16:33 (NIV)
I know, I left out the other important parts of the verse, too. The…
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace.” and “Take heart! I have overcome the world” parts.
In my defense, all I had to do was look around. Bad things were happening everywhere and I’ll be honest with you, I saw very few people, even Christians, living in victory.
I saw people like me, who were going to church, putting on their Sunday smile … just trying to do it right and avoid “trouble.”
But troubles happen and they happened to us.
Many of greatest fears became reality.
I’d spent a lifetime trying to please God and people to control my circumstances and avoid “trouble” and it all collapsed around me.
But God in His mercy allowed me to hear the Spirit whisper Jesus’ words…
“Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”Matthew 11:28–29
And I did…
I surrendered it all at the foot of the cross, cried out to God for help, and started getting to really know for myself who God says He is in the Bible.
And I’ve spending time at His feet every day since … more than a decade of learning that God is who He says He is and that He keeps His promises.
Even when everyone else forgets, God doesn’t; when no one seems to notice, God sees; when not one seems to care, God cares; when you feel all alone, you aren’t.Life Application Bible Notes pg. 87
I laid my junk at the foot of the cross. I gave Him my fear, my need to control, my need to please, my doubts, my “self.”
I surrendered it all!
And God replaced what I gave Him with those things I’d been craving all along … strength, courage, peace, contentment, and so much more!
What’s the most important thing you need to know about God?
Your Father loves you!
You can know Him and have a relationship with Him through Jesus.
You can trust His Spirit to teach and guide you.
You can believe that He is who He says He is.
You can count Him to keep His promises.
When you seek Him first … HE WILL GIVE YOU EVERYTHING YOU NEED!
My story is the reason the tagline here at Counting My Blessings is “at the intersection of faith and life.”
Once you have experienced the saving power of faith in Jesus, God is able to give you everything you need for your life right now … today!
I want you to believe that when Jesus said…
“Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and He will give you everything you need.”Luke 12:31
It is a promise you can count on.
He is not only able to give you everything you need
“So don’t be afraid, little flock. For it gives your Father great happiness to give you the Kingdom.Luke 12:32
Your Father loves you!
He gave Jesus for you and to you because that’s how much He loves you.
He won’t withhold the thing you need today. In fact, It makes Him happy to give you His kingdom’s blessings!
So, don’t wait! Don’t suffer
Make today the day you surrender everything at the foot of the cross. The day you start seeking God with all you’ve got.
The day you start picturing Him happily giving you everything you need.
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I always enjoy hearing from you! Please take a minute to say ‘hi” and share your thoughts in the comments below.
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Thanks for this message today Deb! I needed to hear it again and be reminded of His steadfast love and provision! Have a blessed day :)))
Thank you, Lynn! I so appreciate your kind encouragement! God bless you!
I am asking for special prayer for Mr. Allen Penn. In 1983 he was convicted of murder and placed on death roll. He has always professed his innocence. Now the Arkansas State Crime Lab has DNA evidence that Mr Penn believes will exonerate him. My pray is that I find an attorney in Arkansas or the Memphis TN area to representto him. I am disabled and retired, but am willing to help in anyway possibly. This is an intercessory pray for a professed innocent man who at age 59 has spent much to much time unfairly incarcerated. Please pray with me and for Mr. Penn’s expedient trial and release, in Jesus name, Amen
Elizabeth, I’m joining you in prayer and asking God to allow the truth to be revealed and justice to prevail. God bless you!
Thanks i was devastated this morning my whole life marriage everything is folling apart. But when I see this Scripturesite I take courage. May God bless you abundantly.
I’m so sorry, Kathleen! What a painful thing to go through! I’m so glad God is holding you close and giving you the strength and courage you need. I am thanking Him with you today and praying and asking Him to continue to give you everything you need each day! God bless you!
I am 58 years old, and for as long as I can remember I have suffered from overeating. I have felt terribly guilty about it, and felt that it was a wall between God and myself. However, despite how I have suffered over it I have not been and still am not willing to give up the food. Therefore I do not have peace.
Lisa, thank you so much for visiting and stopping to join the conversation. I think food is an issue for so many of us in one way or another. I’m so sorry for your struggle. I’m praying for you and asking God to give you His peace. May He cover you with His blessings!
Thank you. I really appreciate it.
thank you for writing to share. i am learning, again, to trust and believe.
Thank you, Deb! I am so glad this blessed you! I’m praying and asking God to continue to bless you as you grow closer to Him.
Your writings speak to me so much. To the point of putting me on a life changing new track of thinking and praying and living. What a TOOL you are for our Lord!!!!!
Thank you so much, Kim, for stopping by and for taking the time to let me know this blessed you. And your kind encouragement has truly made my day! God bless you!!
For years, Deb, I, too, lived out “religion” not “relationship.” It is not a comforting place to be at all! So glad God was gentle with me, guiding me to the foot of the cross, where I could lay all my burdens down and find rest, mercy and grace through Jesus.
Blessings, my friend, and thanks for this inspiration!
You’re so right, Martha! Laying down our burdens and finding rest, mercy, and grace through Jesus … it is simply the very best way to live! Blessings and hugs to you!
Just, a big old southern, “Amen!”
Thanks, Girlfriend! You sure do bless me!
Hi Deb thank you for this article. I’ve read it over and over. This article describes me perfectly, (Christian home, Sunday school, Bibl school etc), with all the verses and the knowledge how do you actually put knowing into actually doing? How do you take it all to the cross and leave it? My habit is I take it there and put it down, but after Amen I pick it back up. How do I leave it so it doesn’t kill me?
Please and thank you
Hi, Katie. What a great question! It’s hard, especially for those of who have been taught that it’s up to us to get it right and do it right. I still fall back into the old habit of laying it down and picking it back up occasionally. I guess the thing that changed and helped me was going through a time when even my best efforts weren’t good enough and I was left grieving and broken. Through that experience, I finally learned to simply trust and rest in Jesus. Your last question really hit me. Oh, it sounds just like me. I truly believed there were things that could happen that would destroy me … that even God would not be able to help. And then, some of those things happened. And God proved His love and sufficient grace as He gently held and healed me. Katie, His grace really is sufficient. I truly believe that whatever God allows in our lives … He is not only able but He will give us whatever we need to live it out one day at a time. I hope you’ll keep in touch. I’m praying that God will hold you close and give you His peace. Blessings and hugs, Deb.
I thank you for your prayers, insights, and sharing of God’s Love and Grace!!
Thanks, Brian! You totally blessed my day! Blessings to you and Kathy!
“Hi” Deb! I’ve been following you for three months now and have felt like a kindred spirit since day one. We have some similar physical characteristics and when I read your postings it usually seems like you are writing from my heart. Thank you for teaching and reminding us to always count our blessings. Like-mined, Laura
Hi, Laura! Thank you so much for taking a few minutes to say, “hello.” I so appreciate your kind encouragement. And I always love hearing from a sister sharing her faith for God’s glory! God bless you!
Beautiful and heartfelt! I had a similar experience. I’m so glad Jesus continues loving us and understands when we take so long to grasp His delight in us.
Your post spoke to
Me today. I have been struggling with anxiety after the loss of my husband. Thank you.
So sorry. Your anxiety is totally understandable.
Oh, what a great question to ponder! I’m with you… my answer definitely goes along the lines of wanting people to know just how personal and intimate God wants to be with us! How His Love truly IS enough and how there is nothing we can do to earn it… we must receive it. It’s free for us, but it cost Him everything! Great post, Deb!
Thank you for sharing this…truly the blessing i needed because I, like yourself, have had a “wrong view” of who God is. I grew up in a Baptist church where, the only goal is to be “saved & baptized” & you’re done…your life will be perfect so long as you obey the 10 commandments…then you’ll go to heaven when you die! I’m now 56 yrs old and only recently learned that the 10 commandments were under the “covenant of law” (old testament)! I’ve been hit with much adversity the last 2 yrs (Think Job) and I’ve been asking God “what in the world have i done to deserve all of this”? No job, no car, no money, I still in a chair w/an ottoman in my daughter’s living room, a daughter who hates me enough to refuse to take me for surgery I’d waited on for a yr at the last minute, knowing i needed an MRI after that 1st surgery to find out why i suddenly sometime last yr. developed Hydrocephalus (fluid on brain) as well as many other physical issues– literally from top of my head to the soles of my feet– like Job! People assume you’re being punished & so did I! Actually I’d considered it more of “being cursed” or something! Didnt mean to write so much but I wanted you to understand why this was such a blessing today!
Still struggling with this and feeling so confused. I have thought that I surrendered so many times in my life, but apparently I have not. I have never experienced the “abundant life”. Still seeing Him as a critical parent and judge.
Lisa, I believe that is something with which we all struggle. I have to surrender to Him every morning and sometimes throughout the day. But something I can tell you for certain … He is not a critical parent. He loves you so much! And yes, Jesus will return to judge the world but in and through forgiveness and faith in Him, you and I are covered with grace. Praying that the Lord will defeat that lie of fear and discouragement and fill you with His peace. God bless you!
Thank you so much. I seem to need all the prayers I can get!