Sara's Musings

Home » A.W. Tozer Quotes » God Is Easy to Live With

God Is Easy to Live With

October 2014
S M T W T F S
« Sep   Nov »
 1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
262728293031  

Blogs I Follow

The Gospel of John

Click pic to start reading the Gospel of John

God’s Offer to Us

Click pic for "God's Offer for Us"

The Gospel Cannot Be Contained

Click pic for "The Gospel Cannot Be Contained"

The Cost of Discipleship

Click pic for "The Cost of Discipleship"

Our Highest Priority

Click pic for "Our Highest Priority"

Penetrating the Darkness

Click Pic for "Penetrating the Darkness"

Leaps of Faith

Click Pic for "Leaps of Faith"

Psalm 46v1-2Oftentimes folks tend to think of God (and who He is) on a wide continuum that ranges from one extreme to the other. For example, an actress from years ago and long since dead now used to say that she viewed God as her own personal “Sugar Daddy.” Still others tend to think of Him in terms ranging from  “The Man Upstairs” to a mean old tyrant or a killjoy bully. And none of these descriptions are accurate.

Not by a long shot . . . .

I know in my own life I’ve tended at times to view God in ways that are very inaccurate, and more times then I hate to admit it has been from the perspective of a tyrannical boss who is never quite satisfied with anything I do (or don’t do), and that is an awful tightrope to be walking on. I’ve also met folks who have thought of God (much like the long since dead actress mentioned above) as their own personal “Sugar Daddy” or genie just waiting to give them everything their heart desires regardless of the cost to others or any detrimental effects their “desires” might have on them long term. There are probably as many false images of God as there are people living on the planet, and most are born out of our own fears and/or desires.

Over these past 5 1/2 years of unemployment that have also been some of the toughest years of my life to get through, I’ve discovered just how inaccurate my view of God has been at times over the years. There is a lot of evil in this world of ours and plenty of opportunities to run into it all the time whether in temptations, lusts, or through others (like actual flesh-and-blood tyrannical bosses, or on a larger scale tyrannical dictators or terrorists). However, God doesn’t operate by what we think or how we feel about Him at any given moment in time.

It’s hard for me to recount the number of times that God has come to my aid at the exact time I needed it during this prolonged period of unemployment; and in a myriad of ways and not just from a financial standpoint (although that has been amazing in and of itself). He has been a constant source of amazement and encouragement to me in ways I never would have noticed had I been employed and earning a steady paycheck during this time. In fact, I would not replace anything I have learned about Him during this time with a fancy title and big paycheck or for anything else this world has to offer in the material realm–not that God isn’t fully aware of our needs in that particular area. It just goes to show you how skewed our view of God can get until something happens in our lives that is way beyond our control.

To quote A.W. Tozer (1897-1963), “Nothing twists and deforms the soul more than a low or unworthy conception of God.” If we really want to get to know who God is, we need to lay aside our misconceptions of who we think He is and all of the accompanying stereotypes found in our culture. One of the best descriptions I’ve read was written by A.W. Tozer, and the following essay is taken from The Best of A.W. Tozer (1978) compiled by Dr. Warren Wiersbe, Chapter 27, titled, God Is Easy To Live With.” The book was republished in 2007 under the title, The Best of A.W. Tozer, Book 1.” Here is Tozer’s response:

God Is Easy To Live With

by A. W. Tozer

Satan’s first attack upon the human race was his sly effort to destroy Eve’s confidence in the kindness of God. Unfortunately for her and for us, he succeeded too well. From that day, men have had a false conception of God, and it is exactly this that has cut out from under them the ground of righteousness and driven them to reckless and destructive living.

Nothing twists and deforms the soul more than a low or unworthy conception of God. Certain sects, such as Pharisees, while they held that God was stern and austere, managed to maintain a fairly high level of external morality; but their righteousness was only outward. Inwardly they were “white sepulchres,” as our Lord Himself told them. Their wrong conception of God resulted in a wrong idea of worship. To a Pharisee, the service of God was a bondage which he did not love but from which he could not escape without a loss too great to bear. The God of the Pharisee was not an easy God to live with, so his religion became grim and hard and loveless. It had to be so, for our notion of God must always determine the quality of our religion.

Much Christianity since the days of Christ’s flesh has also been grim and severe. And the cause has been the same – an unworthy or an inadequate view of God. Instinctively we try to be like our God, and if He is conceived to be stern and exacting, so will we ourselves be.

From a failure to properly understand God comes a world of unhappiness among good Christians even today. The Christian life is thought to be a glum, unrelieved cross-carrying under the eye of a stern Father who expects much and excuses nothing. He is austere, peevish, highly temperamental, and extremely hard to please. The kind of life which springs out of such libelous notions must of necessity be but a parody on the true life in Christ.

It is most important to our spiritual welfare that we hold in our minds always a right conception of God. If we think of Him as cold and exacting, we shall find it impossible to love Him, and our lives will be ridden with servile fear. If, again, we hold Him to be kind and understanding our whole inner life will mirror that idea.

The truth is that God is the most winsome of all beings and His service is one of unspeakable pleasure. He is all love, and those who trust Him need never know anything but that love. He is just, indeed, and He will not condone sin; but through the blood of the everlasting covenant He is able to act toward us exactly as if we had never sinned. Toward the trusting sons of men His mercy will always triumph over justice.

Fellowship with God is delightful beyond all telling. He communes with His redeemed ones in an easy, uninhibited fellowship that is restful and healing to the soul. He is not sensitive nor selfish nor temperamental. What He is today we shall find Him tomorrow and the next day and the next year. He is not hard to please, though He may be hard to satisfy. He expects of us only what He has Himself first supplied. He is quick to mark every simple effort to please Him, and just as quick to overlook imperfections when He knows we meant to do His will. He loves us for ourselves and values our love more than galaxies of newly created worlds.

Unfortunately, many Christians cannot get free from their perverted notions of God, and these notions poison their hearts and destroy their inward freedom. These friends serve God grimly, as the elder brother did, doing what is right without enthusiasm and without joy, and seem altogether unable to understand the buoyant, spirited celebration when the prodigal comes home. Their idea of God rules out the possibility of His being happy in His people, and they attribute the singing and shouting to sheer fanaticism. Unhappy souls, these, doomed to go heavily on their melancholy way, grimly determined to do right if the heavens fall and to be in the winning side in the day of judgment.

How good it would be if we could learn that God is easy to live with. He remembers our frame and knows that we are dust. He may sometimes chasten us, it is true, but even this He does with a smile, the proud, tender smile of a Father who is bursting with pleasure over an imperfect but promising son who is coming every day to look more and more like the One whose child he is.

Some of us are religiously jumpy and self-conscious because we know that God sees our every thought and is acquainted with all our ways. We need not be. God is the sum of all patience and the essence of kindly good will. We please Him most, not by frantically trying to make ourselves good, but by throwing ourselves into His arms with all our imperfections, and believing that He understands everything and loves us still.

As Tozer stated above, From a failure to properly understand God comes a world of unhappiness among good Christians even today . . . . Unfortunately, many Christians cannot get free from their perverted notions of God, and these notions poison their hearts and destroy their inward freedom.” But the good news is this (as stated above):

How good it would be if we could learn that God is easy to live with. He remembers our frame and knows that we are dust. He may sometimes chasten us, it is true, but even this He does with a smile, the proud, tender smile of a Father who is bursting with pleasure over an imperfect but promising son who is coming every day to look more and more like the One whose child he is.

When unfortunate circumstances come our way (like my own battle with long term unemployment), it is an opportunity to experience God in a whole new way if we don’t fall back on our tainted image of who we think God is and blame Him for our misfortune. No, it is in the midst of our hardest trials that He shines forth in ways we cannot imagine if we will follow His lead and not try to come up with solutions on our own.

God’s ways are, indeed, not our ways (Isaiah 55:8-9). And His ways are for our very best in order to conform us to His Son, Jesus Christ . . .

May we never lose sight of that fact . . . .

YouTube Video: “My Help” sung by The Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir:

Photo credit here

Advertisements

1 Comment

  1. […] Source: God Is Easy to Live With […]

    Like

Comments are closed.

Follow Sara's Musings on WordPress.com

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 295 other followers

Blog Stats

  • 33,000 hits

Translate This Blog

Click pic to go to translate page

Follow me on Twitter

Need Answers? Go to . . .

Click pic for "GotQuestions?org"

Don’t Put It Off

Click pic for "Don't Put It Off"

natsab

Here I stand.

The Daniel Fast

Consecrate yourself unto the Lord through extended prayer and fasting.

Unshakable Hope

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 15:13)

It's a God thing...

Unpacking the baggage of life, love, and spirituality

drcristy

Dystopian Fiction Writer | Doctor | Wife | Mom

Reformedish

incompletely reformed thoughts on God, ministry, and life

lovelyseasonscomeandgo

This WordPress.com site is the bee's knees

Messianic Sabbath

A daily break in your day to celebrate our salvation in Yeshua (Jesus) and our abundant life through the Torah

For Such A Time As This

"...who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?" Esther 4:14

The Pursuit of God

Serious Topics for Serious Christians

Disciples of hope

Living the hope that comes from Christ

daily meditation

daily thoughts on scriptures

The Minstrel's Wife

A worship leader's missus and her views from the pew

From the Wisdom of our Founders

Important Quotations to Instruct and Inspire

Growing Forward

a blog for those seeking personal change for God's glory

The Old Guys

Quotes & Resources From... The Old Guys

Prime Reality Ministries

God is the Real Reality!

Flotsam and Jetsam

Random thoughts and commentaries on God's Word

Sara's Musings

Living It Out. . . on WordPress.com

Don Sweeting

Reflections on theology, worship, culture, history and the church

What's The Good Word?

Reflections on daily readings from the Scriptures

A DEVOTED LIFE

Practical Daily Devotions for the Real World

The Daily Way

A Daily Devotional from Dr. Michael Youssef

Jean Huang Photography - Los Angeles Custom Portraiture and Fine Art Photographer

"Transformational Beauty" "Maternity" "Newborn" "Children" "FineArt" Photography

Life in the Boomer Lane

Musings of a former hula hoop champion

Laura's Lens

Taking a look at the beauty around us

Perception

Photography. Life.

ILLUSTRATION AGE

THE ULTIMATE RESOURCE FOR ILLUSTRATORS

The Elliptical Saloon

Weblog for WhiteHouseMuseum.org

Thought For the Day

Bringing whatever stirs my heart

A Breath of Fresh Air

"Go out into the world uncorrupted, a breath of fresh air in this squalid and polluted society. Provide people with a glimpse of good living and of the living God." Philippians 2:15

Joel C. Rosenberg's Blog

Tracking events and trends in Israel, the U.S., Russia and throughout the Epicenter (the Middle East & North Africa)

ForeWords

Lectionary Musings within the Community of Christ

Of Dust & Kings

Empowering Faith. Transforming Culture.

A MINIATURE CLAY POT

"We carry this precious Message around in the unadorned clay pots of our ordinary lives" 2 Corinthians 4:7 The Message

gracefully50

On your birthday: count your candles, count your years, count your blessings.

lilies, sparrows and grass

"That I may publish with the voice of thanksgiving, and tell of all thy wondrous works." Psalm 26:7

%d bloggers like this: