“GET UP”

Many of us are going throughout our day-to-day life not realizing our dangerous circumstances. As you read the previous sentence, some of you may have started thinking about the dangers of this world such as crime, accidents, sickness, etc… But those dangers of this world pale in comparison to the danger of not having a relationship with the Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ or neglecting this relationship and living in disobedience.

Over the last couple of months, I have been dwelling on a recent series taught by my Pastor (John Brooks, MDiv – Macedonia Baptist Church, KCMO). The title of the series was “You Can Run But There’s No Hiding Place”. Within this series we studied the book of Jonah. We all know that Jonah was a Prophet who did not want to go to Nineveh in order to relay God’s message of repentance. We all know that instead of going to Nineveh, Jonah tried to go in the opposite direction of Nineveh and invested in boat fare to take him to Tarshish. We all know that a storm arose and somehow or another Jonah ended up in the belly of a BIG FISH (can’t really say “whale” since the identity of the “fish” has not been confirmed)…and the story continues on…

I think what we fail to realize (and Pastor Brooks pointed out so clearly) is that when we are so focused on ourselves and not on the work of Christ…in other words when we “sin”…We begin to live in a distorted reality. We begin to no longer think or care about how are actions impact others. We begin to forget about the corporate body. We begin to no longer care about those who may be “lost” because they do not have a relationship with Christ. We begin to think “It’s all about me…” We forget or down play “who” God is and “what” God has done. We place God in a box and tell Him that we don’t need him to take care of us. We rope off certain areas of our lives where we tell God “don’t worry about it…I got this…” We have a distorted reality. Sin distorts our perception on reality.

Sin causes us to forget that attributes of God. Jonah tried to hide from God in the lower level of the ship thinking…”He will never find me down here…” His distorted reality caused him to forget that God is omnipresent. Jonah thought that God did not know his thoughts or plan not to go to Nineveh. His distorted reality caused him to forget that God is omniscient. Jonah thought that God made a mistake by giving him the instruction to go and share a message of repentance to the people of Nineveh. His distorted reality caused him to forget that God is omnipotent. God should not be placed in a box. There is no limits to what He can do. Jonah knew that God is compassionate. Yet, Jonah did not want God to show compassion to the people of Nineveh. His distorted reality caused him to forget that God’s is unchangeable. His standards/characteristics have never and will never change. God is holy. God hates sin. Jonah sinned through his disobedience and was punished (the violent storm and the fish). Sin impacts our relationship with God. Though God punishes sin, it is comforting to know that He is a just God. Despite Jonah’s sin and the sin of the Ninevites (i.e. slapping people with fishes – inside joke for Veggie Tales fans), God showed compassion towards them. However, Jonah’s distorted reality caused him to forget that though we may not always understand everything, God’s actions are “best”. Jonah’s distorted reality caused him to forget that God is love.

We know that sin distorts our perception of reality. We know that sin impacts our relationship with God. But…some of you might be wondering…”WHAT EXACTLY IS SIN?” In simple terms, sin is anything you think, say, or do that displeases God or breaks His laws. Jonah displeased God or sinned by being disobedient. He invested in his disobedience by devising a plan of action in order to attempt to remove him self from the equation (or prevent God’s work from being done). His distorted reality caused him to think his efforts would be successful.

Are you living with a distorted perception of reality? Have you allowed sin to distort you view of “who” God is and “what” he has done, is doing, and will do for you? Do you really need a violent storm or a great fish to come into your life in order to come back to reality? Are you like Jonah? Are you in the bottom of the boat fast asleep as danger surrounds you and is ready to envelop you? Like Jonah, do you need those impacted by your distorted perception to yell “WAKE UP!!!”

It’s time to GET UP. It’s time to remove the scales from your eyes so that your view of reality is clear. This clear view comes only through having an intimate and personal relationship with Jesus Christ. God is a perfect God. He sent His perfect Son, Jesus Christ, to willing shed his blood on the cross for YOU. He does not make mistakes. Accept that your sin has distorted your perception of reality. Believe that despite the unknowns and dangers of this world God has a plan for YOU. Commit to allow God access and lordship of every aspect of your life. He is a loving, merciful, and compassionate God who simply wants you to GET UP. Can you hear Him calling…

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2 Comments »

  1. A campassionate call in spite of our own lostness. It does remind us of how desparate we are for Him to get up first and most. I think the “distorted perspective of reality” is best seen in how we treat one another. Or rather as the scales are removed perhaps we’ll see each other better, how much we need each other. Does his plan not included US?

    Awesome! Keep it up. And you look good too.

  2. Venus Griswold Said:

    TSheff!!!

    Wonderful entry!! Sin has absolutely distorted our perception of reality. I found insight when Pastor said that we don’t see things as they really are. After the fall in the garden we see things differently. We walk around this world as if we have no creator. The world is trapped in darkness and has been for so long that they have adapted to walking around in darkness. They don’t know what surrounds them. BUT!!! we (believers) have a light through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. In the morning when the light comes on we wake up! As believers we ought to shine our lights so bright that others can’t ignore it.

    Praise God!


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