Jesus Wasn’t Made In America
Today’s chaotic and violent times in America have more people than ever talking about the end times (the tribulation). As a believer it’s a wonderful thing to see so much interest in what will be the great promise of Christianity – the return of Jesus Christ.
But, there are two realities that cause concern. The first is the confusion over what is referred to as End Times. It’s seen as such a bleak period that believers are almost afraid of the rapture. Maybe if we started calling it what it actually will be, then some of the fear would subside. It is the Beginning Times.
The tribulation is the beginning of the era that leads to the Millennium. This is the 1,000 year reign of Jesus over Israel as well as all nations on earth (Isaiah 2:4; 42:1) when the world will finally live in peace. Why would we be afraid of this?
In all honesty, as wonderful as the fulfillment of God’s great promise is, I understand that the unknown can be intimidating. We like what we’re familiar with, and the uncertainty of what Christians will experience leading up to the tribulation causes fear and chaos. That’s why it’s so important to read God’s Word and become aware of the reality of His promise to be kept.
The other concern stems from the lack of understanding about the events and focus on the tribulation. Americans are usually self-focused and seem to think that what happens on US soil will trigger or be the signs of the tribulation. Honestly, this isn’t ours to control. Rioters, protesters, anarchist or elections have no influence on God’s eternal design.
It’s a great time to look at the reality of God in His true, omniscient, omnipresent and omnipotent form and not some media caricature we created to satisfy self. The triune God was not Made in America.
The more I began to push past the surface of what I knew God to be, I began to realize that because I wanted to know God, I had attached an image of Him in my mind. That image was limiting what He would be able to do in my life. It was weird because I didn’t want to restrict Him at all, but thanks to my pre-understandings, that’s what we all do to Him.
My Jesus was an American Jesus. I loved Him, and was happy that others in the world got to know about Him, but the limited truth was, He belonged to America. In my mind’s eye, Jesus carried Old Glory and rode a screaming bald eagle across our purple mountains majesty. He was the God that I knew as an American. Why? Because that was how I knew him, as a product of Western culture.
I watched television shows about the starving kids in Africa and the missionaries and organizations who helped feed them. It was heartwarming and reassuring that my American Jesus was at work helping kids from across the globe. After all, it’s what we are called to do in helping others less fortunate than ourselves.
Jesus In A Box
I began to pray that I not restrict Christ in my life. You know those safe, regular prayers we pray about having a good day, and being happy or getting that promotion? That’s keeping Jesus in a box, like a magic genie. Sure, we believe in Him when we need Him. That’s also the way most of us treat their relationships with others. It doesn’t work for good.
The first time I prayed out loud to God and asked that I allow Him to be Him and not what I thought of Him, I felt kinda stupid. How could I not allow God to be God? In reality, we do it every moment of every day that we fail to unlock that Jesus Box we keep in our pocket.
We limit Him as if He’s some mystical force that saves us when we screw up on the job, lose custody of our kids, our spouse starts asking questions about our sexual sin, or what we thought we were entitled to suddenly becomes a reality that we never deserved in the first place. Only when we realize that we can’t fix, help or hide it, do we turn to that mystical box for help.
Set Jesus free. Let Him out of that constricted box you limit Him to. All because you close the lid on the box doesn’t mean He can’t see the sin in your life. Freedom for you comes through surrendering to Him. You will know greater freedom than ever imagined. You will also come to see God in all of His glory as the creator of life. Not just American life, but every single living thing.
In that freedom there is light, love and everlasting joy in understanding that God has no boundaries. Once we see how unlimited His authority actually is, we will also learn that we too have an unrestricted capacity to exercise His authority in Jesus’s name.
13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. ~ John 14:13-14
Love & Respect
I’m so thankful for you and pray daily over everyone who has taken their valuable time to connect. I do appreciate you and may God bless you beyond measure.
I love you more, Scott