Though our experience with God happens within the context of our life experiences, it is not exactly the same thing. Life experiences shape us in a different way than our experience with God.
Experiences of life help shape the majority of people who pass through this world and accounts for why our world is fast decaying in God’s perspective and that of His people. Some good has come out of the life experiences of man such as having learnt how to do many things differently to improve man’s existence on earth. However, when it comes to the way man lives with his fellow man, hardly can it be said there has been improvement.
The reason for the lack of improvement is highly related to what man takes out of his life experience with others. Even for many Christians, this is still true.
The Bible clearly says that the heart of man is desperately wicked and highly deceitful Jer 17:9. Given that what man does visibly comes from this same heart of wickedness and deceit, I guess it is no surprise that man’s experience with his fellow men is but wicked—and deceitful.
Most times, when statements like, “I have learnt my lesson” are made, both by Christians and non Christians, it is usually in reference to— I have learnt how to deal with man better. Better in the sense of I now know what man is like and I must deal with man according to man’s fallen nature.
The essence of this short article is to encourage Christians to rather deal with man by our experience with God. To non Christians it is an invitation to come accept Christ—without whom it is impossible to participate in God’s divine nature. The Christian’s experience with God starts with regeneration of the heart, the sprinkling of the mind with Christ’ Blood and imputation of righteousness. The importance of this initial experience cannot be overemphasized. It is the foundation upon which God calls anyone to deal with life and its experiences.
Without the foundation of God’s nature made alive in man, men may pretend to be good until pushed beyond the limit of human goodness. But, when God’s nature is made alive in man, heaven’s ministration comes upon the heart—sanctifies the mind and empowers it continually to participate in divine living like the Lord from Heaven (Christ Jesus). It is on this basis that the will of God in heaven is done on earth. It has no limitation, for that which is impossible with men is made possible in man by God.
So then, as Christians our light or good (that is Christ) shines before men only when we let our experiences with God govern us. Then, praise is given to God in heaven by men on the earth Matt 5:16. Let us be reminded, those nicknamed “Christians” in Antioch got the name because; they displayed Christ’s nature and not just their belief in Him Acts 11:26. By the Holy Spirit, their lives were a blessing to those of the household of faith and to all men.
What can you say has truly shaped the person you are—is it your God experience or life experience?
So, who are we reacting to according to what they deserve and not according to Christ’s grace? Think soberly about it. The soberness this creates in our hearts can’t fail to lead to repentance, forgiveness—and ultimately, reconciliation unless, we have become reprobates.
Think also about this; God is the One who forgives first and seeks reconciliation with sinful man. This is how I know that God is spiritual and full of love. How do you and I show we are spiritual and having the love of Christ in our hearts not our mouths? The spiritual man ought to be first in good deeds and serving others. Let him who will be the first be the servant (not leader) of all men Mark 9:35. Do you agree with Jesus?
Have a blessed fruitful day
I really enjoyed this short article and thanks for sharing. I always ask my Christian brothers and sisters how can one claim to have an experience with God if your experience with men is not a reflection of God’s nature and character?? Just like it is mentioned in the article (Acts 11:26) that the first people called Christians (Christ-like) were called this not because they claimed to be Christians but their experience with Christ was evident in their character and in the nature of their experience with fellow men that 3000 non-Christians became Christians on that very day….So when our experience with God governs our experience with men, his light shines and men (new converts) are also drawn to God….Shalom
Thanks Ken for commenting.
You’re right! God’s intent in redeeming us sinners to Himself is to make us learn from Him, walk with Him and from the backdrop, relate to our fellow men on earth. In so doing, His will in heaven is done on earth amongst men.
It’s a challenge to all Christians. However, His grace is sufficient in Christ by the Holy Spirit for those who are willing to pay the price—that is, look stupid, long suffering and valuing eternal perspective over the temporal. Nothing else makes it easier to love, forgive and serve others like keeping eternal perspective in front of us at all times under all circumstances.