When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?”
They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.”
“But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”Matthew 16:13-15 New International Version
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I believe God created our universe. All of it. The infinitesimally small part of it we can touch, the vast expanses we study with telescopes, the parts that defy our understanding, the distant expanses that are 14 billion years old, and the remnants that expanded faster than the speed of light so that we will never be able to observe them. As far as our feeble brains can tell, the universe is pretty close to infinitely large, and our God designed and constructed every bit of it.
Infinite is really big. Supposing we want to count to infinity, we would start with one, then two, three, four, and on and on, and we would never stop counting. However, infinity is much bigger than that. In between the numbers zero and one are infinities of fractions, starting with one over two, then one over three, one over four, and on and on. You can make up an infinite number of other series of fractions between zero and one, and then all those infinite series of fractions also appear between one and two, then two and three, and on and on. Infinite is really, really big, and our God measures all these infinities.
So what about us? What is the nature of our relationship with our infinite God?
I believe the Creator of the universe offers us a one on one relationship that is intensely personal and unique. God made each of us unique, and God equipped us with a distinct combination of personality traits, physical attributes, and talents. We each stretch our finite minds to comprehend our infinite God, and here me carefully on this point: each of us observes a different, minuscule revelation of who God is, based on who we are.
There are two truths I think we can take from this insight. The first truth is that we are compelled to develop our unique relationship with God throughout our lives. There are core truths that we should consider about the nature of God, including that God is Love, and that God desires a relationship with us. There are other observations we will make about God that won’t be in others’ experiences, and these have value because we are unique and we are uniquely blessed by God.
This leads to the second truth I draw from this insight. Your relationship with God will be different than my relationship with God, and the God who is Love calls each of us to affirm and support each other in this uniqueness. I have no legitimate cause to criticize you if you listen to spiritual leaders that I don’t find helpful, or if you follow different worship traditions than I do. We have an overflowing abundance of God’s Love to share between us, and that is more precious and valuable than our differences.
However, you have a duty to God to carefully consider what teachers you do choose to follow. You and God need to decide if what they are telling you is consistent with what you have learned from God. You know that God is Love, so reject messages of hate. You know that God has a personal relationship with you, so reject messages that call you to abandon your moral judgements and follow the crowd. You know that God made each of us as a unique creation, so reject messages that do not affirm others as God’s works of divine art.
So what about you? Where are you on that life-long walk of discovering God? May God blessings carry you throughout your unique journey!
Scripture quotations taken from The Holy Bible, New International Version® NIV®
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