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Establishing Believers in the Christian Faith

from the book Why I Love God

14. Other Roles God Fulfilled

I related to God as my Protector. Numerous trials would arise through natural or human agency. Whether it was a disaster, illness, personal threat, false accusation, or other peril, if things followed their natural course I would be greatly harmed. But God faithfully delivered me. In some cases deliverance came by His superintending circumstances so things did not follow their natural course. In other cases He permitted me to go through the trial for the sake of a greater good I did not foresee.

I related to God as my Provider. Financial difficulties would arise — at times due to my own mismanagement, while other times due to circumstances beyond my control. But either way, He sovereignly maneuvered circumstances and comforted me though His word, and I came out unscathed.

I related to God as my Strength. Grievous situations would arise where I had no strength to continue, and I utterly despaired. But in those times I went to Him, and prayed earnestly and fervently. And He answered by giving me the strength to continue and persevere. Truth — the truth of scripture — would come riding on a white horse to deliver my soul from the grave and empower me.

I related to God as One who knew me. He knew my strengths, weaknesses, feelings, thoughts, attitudes, heartaches, longings, and actions. He saw them all with absolute clarity. And that reality was both comforting and sobering. It was comforting in that others may misjudge my character and speak evil against me. But I am not defined by lies or misconceptions. I am defined by what is true, and He knew what was true. It is likewise comforting in that I may not know the dynamics of my own heart. Why am I fearful? Why does that one thing make me so upset? But it is comforting to realize He knows those dynamics, and He has the power and wisdom to address them. On the other hand, my awareness that God knew everything was also very sobering. That truth stood as a watchman over me, and was the basis of my fear of the Lord which is the beginning of wisdom.

I related to God as One who was always there. There were earthly relationships I valued highly, but those people were not always available. But not so with my God. He was always there no matter what the circumstance or location. He was there.

So the moment I believed I became God’s child, and He became my heavenly Father. The eternal, all-mighty, all-wise God was now accessible to and in relationship with me. And He was accessible not in a distant way like a king to a subject, or an official to a citizen, or an employer to an employee. No, not at all. He was accessible in a much more tender and intimate way: as a Father with His son. That relationship would grow deeper as weeks turned into months, and months into years. But the moment I believed was when it all started.

from the book Why I Love God

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