If someone walked up to you and addressed you as “Lord” or “God of the universe,” I suspect you’d think it absurd. Most of us would never claim to be God or mistake ourselves as sovereign, all-powerful, or perfect. At least, not consciously.
Without realizing it, though, we often act like we are God. That’s the basis of sin. God never meant for us to be Him, even as He makes us more and more like Christ.
What sweet relief when we realize this, step back, and rely on the one and only true God! Then we can “Be still, and know that (God is) God; (He) will be exalted among the nations, (He) will be exalted in the earth” (Psalm 46:10).
Here are some signs that we’re missing out on resting in Christ by trying to be God:
“For when you did awesome things that we did not expect,
you came down, and the mountains trembled before you.
Since ancient times no one has heard,
no ear has perceived,
no eye has seen any God besides you,
who acts on behalf of those who wait for him.” –Isaiah 64:3-4
Limits have existed from the very start of creation. God created us within the bounds of time and space. Our bodies are inherently limited – in how much they can do, in how they move, in how long they last. Our minds, emotions, and energy are limited, too. God alone is all-knowing, all-powerful, all-present. There is no one besides Him!
We deny this when we ignore our limits and ignore our need for rest, sleep, help, or healing. Living beyond our means – whether that’s physically, financially, emotionally, mentally – shows us we’re trusting more in our own efforts than God’s sovereignty.God never meant for us to be Him, even as He makes us more and more like Him. Click To Tweet
Expecting to be in Authority
“In their hearts humans plan their course, but the LORD establishes their steps.” – Proverbs 16:9
Often, we don’t just want control, we assume we should have it. We count our time, gifts, feelings, plans, etc., as belonging strictly to us.
Things that interfere with our will expose this inner expectation that we have authority. Traffic makes us late and we’re outraged at the inconvenience. Someone asks for our help and then dictates how they’d like to receive it instead of letting us exercise our gifts as we think best.
In The Screwtape Letters, C.S. Lewis describes this, saying, “The humans are always putting up claims to ownership which sound equally funny in heaven and in hell…they will find out in the end, never fear, to whom their time, their souls, and their bodies really belong.”
Assuming so much authority puts a lot of foolish, undue pressure on us (and those around us.) God establishes our steps. He’s aware of every hair on our shedding heads and not one bird falls to the ground without Him. God is in control, and when we assume that, we’re much less stressed when things don’t go the way we’d have them if we were in charge.
Trying to Fix the Future
“Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?” (Matthew 6:27)
We spend an awful lot of time thinking about the future. Some of it’s practical, like planning meals ahead for the week. But sometimes we’re assuming trouble and then arranging today in hopes of preemptively fixing tomorrow. Worry gnaws at us, the anticipation robs us of the present peace available to us, and our efforts to “future-proof” our situations might tempt us to be prideful.
If we’re more concerned with fixing the future than being faithful in what we know today, we’re stepping on God’s toes. In essence, when we try to fix the future, we’re saying, “just in case you don’t come through, God.” But God always comes through. He is always sufficient, and He renews us in Him day by day. In Him, we have everything we need today, and that will also be true in every tomorrow we’re given.
What other signs of forgetting we’re not God can you think of?If we're more concerned with fixing the future than being faithful in what we know today, we're stepping on God's toes. Click To Tweet