Anne Lamott in Bird By Bird speaking of the writing process and how writers do not create an elegant first draft.
"Not one of them (her writing friends) writes elegant first drafts. All right, one of them does, but we do not like her very much. We do not think she has a rich inner life or that God likes her very much.
"Although, when I mentioned this to my priest friend he said, 'you can safely assume you've created God in your own image when it turns out God hates all the same people you do.'"
The priest has spoken some of the most profound words I've ever heard. How often do we create God in our own image? He believes what we believe, He loves what we love, He excuses sins we excuse.
More and more we are basing our Gospel on what we've experienced or witnessed or felt rather than what is true in God's Word.
"I hate Jane, so God does." Or, "It's okay to hate her."
"I lust, so therefore God doesn't mind my sexual behavior. It's the way I am and He loves everyone, right?"
"I had to cheat or I'd have failed. God doesn't want me to fail."
"I've always believed this way and I know the Bible says different, but this is who I am."
Have you heard those sorts of arguments? I have. Some from my own lips in my short life time. Or similar excuses.
The moment you start redefining God's truth according to YOUR standards, you can safely assume you've created God in your own image. Then He is not God at all.
We think in these modern times we don't have the idols of the Greeks or Egyptians. No? Greed, selfishness, lust, celebrity, pleasure. . . Pretty big idols in this country, in the church.
Isaiah 44:15 - 17 talks about man taking a tree he's planted an using it to warm himself, bake his bread, then fashioned into an idol which he worships crying, "god, deliver me."
Be honest, don't we do much the same? Put our stock in men and things, jobs and money, political and church leaders over God.
What's the big deal about the counsel of men when we ignore the very counsel of God?
Let's strive to form ourselves into God's image, no matter how hard, instead of conforming Him into ours. God with a small "g" cannot save us. A god fashioned by our own imagination, mind and will has no power.
Maybe you are in church every Sunday, leading classes, a part of worship, hosting a home church, but your values are founded on the Word when it's good, your experience when it's convenient.
Let's pledge to be change from His glory to His glory. Not our own.