Wednesday, October 16, 2013

"Just" God

How often have you prayed and heard yourself saying, "God, I just want to ask you..."  or "God, I just come to you..."  "God, I ask that you just (insert request)..."

I started this blog thinking, "Well, I'm just (see, I said it too!) going to explain to people that we must never reduce God to "just" God...but I was surprised when I looked up the definition of just. So I really don't know where I'm going here, but hang on...come for the ride with me.

The Oxford Dictionary, which is like the Bentley of Dictionaries (have you ever seen the SIZE of one of those???) defines "just", in the adverb form (which it is here) as the following:  exactly, very recently, barely, or simply, only.  

I sort of stumbled on the definition I was looking for---barely. The word, "barely," (in keeping with Oxford) means "in a way that is just (ha, there it is again) possible, but only with difficulty." I was under the impression before I looked this word up, that by saying, "I just ask, I just come, or just do..." that we limit and diminish God to someone lesser than Who He Is. He's "just" God. But if I replace "just" with some of these other words, including barely, here's what happens:

"God, I barely ask...I ask it in a way that is possible, but because of my unbelief, it is difficult."
"God, I simply come."
"God, I only come"
"God, I ask that you do this...exactly this..."

Wow, did that change my view of the word "just."  It also convinced, or rather, convicted me that I often judge others in their praying because they use the word "just"...and all of this while I am supposed to be praying as well! I was going to set the record straight here today on the "just" subject! Ouch! Or as Joyce Meyer would say, "Ouch, hallelujah!" It's a holy ouch. A spiritual conviction meant to show me my fault but also meant for my growth. 

In today's world, we tend to over-educate, over-stimulate, over-think, and over-analyze. God wants us to "just come." Just come to Jesus. Simply come. Come only to Him. Come exactly as you are. Come in a way that is just possible, but maybe with difficulty. We don't have to over-analyze, over-think, or over-educate ourselves before we come. We don't need to be perfect. We don't need to have it all together. If that were the case, not one of us would ever come! Simply come. He will meet you where you are. Even if you already know Him, keep coming! Come every day. Come afresh.

Funny, the adjective, "just" means, "based on or behaving according to what is morally right and fair; deserved or appropriate in the circumstances." And we are told in God's Word, that He is just. ...everything he does is right and all his ways are just (Daniel 4:37). Ha! What an ironic twist---the very God that I thought we diminish by using the word, "just" is just that,,,just! I love when He does that!

What's holding you back today from "just" asking? From "just" coming? He's not "just" God, but He is a just God. Make no mistake---He may be a just God, but He is a loving and merciful God. He will not condemn you, but he will convict you...just like he did me. But did you notice how I loved it? That's the difference between a condemning God and a convicting God. A just God convicts. And that "holy ouch" of conviction helps us grow closer to Him and to be more like Him. It is my desire to act justly, and to love mercy and to walk humbly with [my] God (Micah 6:8).

Blessings Along the Path,

Songs of the Day
Come Just As You Are (Crystal Lewis)
Micah 6:8 (Monroe Crossing) 

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