Monday, 26 April 2010

God wants to "use us"? His gifts are for your joy? It's okay to accept compliments?

April 25, 2010
In The Misunderstood God,” Darin Hufford writes (page 99):
“When we say that God wants to “use us” in some way to further His purposes… It’s as though we think He sees us as pawns in His big plan, and whatever way He can use us for His own means and purposes, He will.”
Okay. Here’s where I get annoyed. Sometimes this writer seems to really paint everybody with one big brush stroke. Maybe that is what “use us” means to him – but it sure doesn’t line up with what it means to me!
To me it means “Let me help. Let me serve because I love You – and love serves, remember? Let me be part of the great adventure! Thank You!”
Hufford continues (page 100):
“The gifts He has given you are never to be used at your expense. He does not want you to be used by anyone, and He will never use you. Your gifts were given to you for the purpose of bringing joy to your life, not for the purpose of serving Him or furthering His cause.”
But…. Serving Him with His gifts does bring me joy!!! I don’t feel “used” at all! “Use me, Father” is in no way that same as “He is just using you…”
Hufford goes on:
“You happiness is His cause. If you have joy and contentment, the radiance of Christ will shine through you, and His presence and existence will speak for itself. He gets glory and is happy when you are free and at liberty. Your gifts were given for this purpose.”
Yes! See, it’s a circle. It starts with Him offering me His love. But when I accept Him, my greatest joy is found in being free to serve Him because I love Him! And the relationship continues… and He continues to love – and serve – me… and I love – and serve – Him! And we both have joy together. And around and around and around it goes!
(But boy oh boy, I can see a lot of people shouting “heresy” when they read that last quote. It is hard to stretch our mind beyond the way we’ve always “thought” or “interpreted” or “presupposed”. God is so big. And we are so small. Oh dear. We do want Him to fit comfortably into our tiny boxes. Christ-impersonating does seem “safer” than Christ-likeness, doesn’t it? But when we go that route, we miss out on HIM. And when we miss out on Him, we miss out. Period.)
Hufford then says:
“He gave you these gifts in the first place [because] He wants people to think highly of you and respect you. He loves it when folks are drawn to you and when they are amazed at how gifted you are… Every father who loves his children thinks this way.”
What? It’s okay to graciously accept admiration and compliments? Surely not! And yet…
That is true about human fathers. BUT we are sure not encouraged to think about our Father God that way. “Give all the glory to God!” we’re always told. Well, how about “share it,” enjoy it together, you and your Father? Hmmm? Even that goes too far? Too prideful?
And yet… If we say that we should not accept any “glory” but should give it all to God… then is it therefore wrong for a human father to be proud of his children and happy to see them admired and respected and praised for their accomplishments? Hmmm?

No comments: