Turning To God

If it’s true that the problems the US faces today are not going to be fixed by government, that they actually need a spiritual answer, that such an answer starts with turning to God, what does that mean? What does it look like?

I’ve talked to a number of atheists over the years, and clearly their belief (although they say they don’t believe anything) is that there’s no evidence for God. What they are actually saying is a refutation of Romans 1, and an agreement.

Paul says in the first chapter of this letter that “that which is known about God is evident within them because God made it evident to them.” This, he explains, has been so since the creation of the world, in which God’s invisible attributes, eternal power, and divine nature have been clearly seen through what He made.

So the atheist starts by denying creation.

Paul addressed that, too, saying that though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God. So we refer to “Mother Nature,” not God. Maybe Mother Nature will give us a break in the weather so the fires will be brought under control.

In the same breath, many of the same people declare that humans are in control of that which has been made. So everything will be fine if we just don’t screw it up. All the climate warming and the resulting floods and hurricanes and fires, are our fault because we aren’t doing a good enough job.

So, on one hand, Mother Nature is in charge and we’re just along for the ride, but on the other hand humans are in charge of not making a mess of “our home.” How this Earth became our home, doesn’t ever seem to cross their minds.

But the bottom line is this: those who do not believe in God claim there is no evidence for His existence, then distort that very evidence, suggesting instead that this world and our place in it happened randomly and yet in an orderly progression of random events that can’t be replicated. But it was random. Not a result of an intelligent mind or a loving Father who chose to bring the world into existence and chose to put us humans in charge of it.

Interestingly, I had one atheist tell me she kept the Ten Commandments. Clearly she didn’t really know what they say, because they start with “You shall have no other gods before Me.” Mother =Nature is another god. And so are we humans, if we credit ourselves with what only God does.

I don’t want to get too far from the point. If we are to turn to God, we first have to acknowledge that He is. The writer of the book of Hebrews says that: “And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.”

So the first part of turning to God, I think, is to live what we say we believe. If we believe God is, then we need to trust Him, even when things don’t go the way we want. We need to trust that He sees the end from the beginning, that He knows what’s right.

I remember playing as a kid that I was a pirate looking through a telescope (usually the cardboard tube after all the Christmas wrapping had been used up). The problem with looking through a narrow cylinder is that you don’t get the panorama. You only see one small portion, and sometimes that is so close up it seems as if it is everything, or at least all that is important.

Unlike that kind of limited perspective, God sees and knows what we need, today, ten years from today, what our neighbor needs and our nephew we see at Thanksgiving. God can be trusted, if He is God. And if believers want to lead the way for our nation to return to Him, we need to trust Him, even when we don’t understand what He’s doing.

The prophet Habakkuk had the same issue. He wanted the nation Israel to turn back to God. God told him He was about to send a far more wicked nation to put them into captivity. That made no sense to Habakkuk. Until God told him about the remnant and the Messiah which was part of this overall plan.

So, too, for us, we don’t know what God’s plans are for the world or even for us individually. But we can count on His promises and we can turn to Him as our shield, our refuge, our safety net.

Published in: on October 1, 2020 at 5:12 pm  Comments (9)  
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  1. Reblogged this on By the Mighty Mumford and commented:
    PRAISE YOU LORD–CREATOR AND LORD OF THE UNIVERSE!!!

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  2. THANK YOU FOR POSTING THIS.REBECCA! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  3. “Paul says in the first chapter of this letter that “that which is known about God is evident within them because God made it evident to them.” This, he explains, has been so since the creation of the world, in which God’s invisible attributes, eternal power, and divine nature have been clearly seen through what He made.”

    How are you Becky? And I must disagree, here is a great example of not believing everything you read. Paul was wrong, God cannot and does not make anything evident to anybody, this is obvious, devout Hindu’s, the Australian Aboriginals or the African Zulu’s would not have any knowledge or desire to worship your God or any other.

    Science has done all that you claim, science has indisputable evidence and explained all of it, the evidence exists that proves no super human made anything or created anything and consequently no evidence exists to believe a superhuman has ever existed. You live in a confined American religious bubble.

    Have you ever wondered why the benefits of worship are no more spiritual or advantageous than Pagans, Muslims, Jews or atheists and the eternal life Christians strive for in a heavenly world to avoid the alternative eternal death can only occur when you are dead as per the doctrine of almost all other religions?

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    • Hi Steve, glad to hear from you.

      As usual, we do have a point of departure over creation and over the existence of God.

      In fact, scientists don’t even claim to know how the universe started, other than that it did. They have no idea what caused the initial event most refer to as the Big Bang. There was nothing, and then there was something.

      That idea, without some sort of catalyst flies in the face of all that’s known and all that’s credible.

      And actually, there are a host of benefits of worship, as you put it. I would say there are benefits in knowing God, here and now, which can only be achieved through accepting His free gift, or His payment, if you will, for my sin. These benefits are not things that people who don’t know God can fully understand because they are beyond their experience. But one is the presence of the Holy Spirit, which means, as a Christian, I am never along. When I’m faced with something that feels too big for me, I’m not overwhelmed because I can trust God’s wisdom and strength. With all that comes a peace that “surpasses understanding,” even in the worst of times..

      The best I can tell you is, read the life stories of people like Corrie ten Boom or Jim Eliott or Nabeel Qureshi. They all came from different places, lived at different times, but still had similar experiences in their relationship with God that I do.

      Hope you are well, my friend.

      Becky

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      • I am well thank you my friend and I hope you are also keeping well in these uncertain times.

        As you know I understand this assistance for all theists from their respective gods as something that is manifested within the human brain and this claim is supported by the neuroscience, biological science and studies of human behaviours over many decades.

        The science is I believe also supported by the fact that all religious people have no obvious or clear advantages over atheists.

        The theist advantage according to most religions is only evident when you die. This should be inconvenient for theists for the obvious reason of the unknown quantity, however this aspect is over ridden because life after death satisfies the evolved and inherent human and animal trait of survival at all costs.

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        • Sorry it took so long to get back to you, Steve. As I’m sure you remember, I maintain that the idea that belief in God or gods is a manifestation of something within the human brain, is a claim without any evidence and without universal acceptance even in the scientific community.

          But what I actually want to address is this idea that “religious people have no obvious or clear advantages over atheists.” I would actually agree with that, except that I believe Christians have a clear advantage over other religious people and over atheists. I think I said it already in this discussion: we are not alone. God has given us His presence in the form of His Holy Spirit, and that’s something that’s known only by those who have Him. It’s one of those, “you don’t know what you don’t know” situations. There’s no way to adequately explain “the peace that passes understanding” or the comfort, assurance, strength that God’s presence brings. Best I can do is give anecdotal evidence, but I know those can and will be dismissed by those who don’t believe in God as coincidence.

          But also significant is that Christians don’t become Christians so we can have the Holy Spirit with us. What brings someone to Christ is our sin. We face the fact that we can not get rid of the sin that follows us through life, that we have no way to present ourselves to God as worthy of Him. And then, He shows us His love, while we are in our sins, and tells us He has taken care of our debt. That’s what brings us to God. And in accepting His good gift, we enter into this relationship that is so full and satisfying and beneficial. There’s a line from Psalm 23 that says, “Even when I walk through the valley of the shadow of death. / You are with me.” That’s significant. God rarely delivers us from the valley (though He can and sometimes does), but He always walks with us. So atheist can see that Christians have trouble too, and we do. We get Covid and have strokes and get fired just like anyone else. We lose loved ones and have bills to pay and have children that fall into addiction. We have all the same human problems as other people, but we aren’t alone. And that makes all the difference.

          Becky

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          • I cannot give you a definitive answer on how many scientists believe God is located within the brain and do not want to go over previous discussions however only 33% believe in a God in 19 June 2009 when a Pew Research was done in the US.

            I should imagine 10 years down the track to today the atheist and scientist non-believers would have increased significantly.

            The understanding you have and belief that the holly spirit is somehow the catalyst for your faith and it is something only known by those that have him is really illogical and incorrect for any gods because the benefits from praying are not reality and bring no advantage as you agreed but can only be created in your brain.

            You feel good about yourself, protected and confident with the strength, peace and assurance God’s presence brings.

            This I agree is great for theists and I do not deny their happiness in this, however as I am against indoctrinated ideologies of any kind I will press on. Non-Christians and atheists also enjoy the same effects and emotional feelings. The only difference being a different deity for theists but meditation and simply talking to yourself inside your head or openly can offer up similar peace and comfort feelings including confidence and happiness to atheists lives.

            I am sure I do not have to tell you that the brain will cause or react and record every experience. It influences every single thing we do, so in some way are you saying God either enters your brain to direct your life or bypasses it and communicates directly to your conciousness?

            Atheists may depend on family and friends for advice more than religious people do, but as an atheist I have never felt alone but I do talk to myself, I am very strict and extremely critical of myself that may seem negative but this system has seen me through life for almost 7 decades to become a silly old man who also holds conversations with his cat:)

            Children often have invisible friends and this is a most natural way to help them to understand the world around them, hence the adult versions of gods that is of course enhanced by the accepting of the supernatural due to fear of having nothing after death.

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          • Again, I need to apologize for the length between your comment and my response, but in this case, I believe it was God ordained. Truly. Just this morning, in a convoluted way I came upon an article that includes, among a number of facts, this statement: “the work of science has nothing whatever to do with consensus. Consensus is the business of politics.” It’s also the business of atheists, too, or anyone who looks to science as something we believe if enough “qualified” people repeat it. Here’s the article (a little hard to read in places because of the dark background, but worth it). https://mindmatters.ai/2020/10/should-we-really-listen-to-science-what-should-we-listen-for/ Also, it’s not about religion or by a writer who identifies with a religion. It’s about science, and because you have said over and over that science should be our guide, I thought you would especially be interested in the article.

            The writer did not address the area of “indoctrinated ideologies” directly, but the example from Communist Russia actually is exactly the way in which science can be used as such. Religion? No. Each person is free to accept or reject, and that many “convert,” one way or the other, is proof that no one is indoctrinated.

            And sadly, since you do not have the Holy Spirit, Steve, you have NO POSSIBLE way to measure whether the peace and joy and comfort Christians receive is anything like that which you receive by talking to yourself.

            You asked about God entering my “brain to direct your life or bypasses it and communicates directly to your conciousness?” God is a separate being from me. He’s not “in my brain.” Sometimes He communicates with me from His word. I’ll be reading as I’m accustomed to, and a phrase, line, verse, story pops out that is directly related to whatever I’ve been thinking about or going through. At other times, He speaks through those who teach the Bible, or through friends who share a truth from the Bible. And on the very rare occasions, He has communicated directly to my conscious mind. Still other times, I receive a “stirring in my heart,” a prodding, prompting, a nagging feeling that I should do or say or go . . . Or that I’m OK because I’m not alone, or whatever the issue might be. Not because I want it but that Someone greater who defines right and wrong wants me to act in a certain way. Again, this is hard because without having the same experience it’s hard for anyone else to understand.

            Hope you’re well.

            Becky

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  4. Wow! Great piece sister.

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