Living Proof—Part 2
Updated: Sep 23, 2021
Have you ever been called naive?
I have and according to the first definition at Dictionary.com, the description was accurate.
I can see myself in all of those things. I would even consider myself to be ingenious—to a degree. 😉
In a nutshell, what you see is what you get where I'm concerned. I tend to look for the bright side in situations, most always stick to the rules, and, for the most part, believe what I'm told is true.
I'd even venture to say the phrase goody two shoes crossed the minds of a few people back in the day, but hey! It was the 70's! There was a lot of out with the old and in with the new going on back then. I'd been raised with the Cleaver-esque values of the '50s firmly instilled by example through my parents.
The world view was definitely changing—fast!
I didn't always stand completely firm on my foundation of what's right or wrong when I was younger though.
More often than I'd care to admit, I allowed my opinion to be swayed by those of my friends. They (unwittingly I'm sure because—welcome to Club Naive—we were teenagers, after all! Baha!) had picked up the mantra of croaking frogs whose goal is to entice us away from the truth.
Case in point:
I remember one conversation specifically.
I was a freshman in high school and there was an "everybody's doing it" conversation going on. I may have actually gasped before interjecting a reminder that God would not approve! To which a person that I loved and admired—and whose entire family attended church together—laughed and said, "But that was back in Bible days. It doesn't mean now."
I had to ponder that for a minute.
What she said kind of made sense. I mean, how many times when I was younger had I sat in Sunday School when the lesson had been about one of the amazing, supernatural feats God had accomplished for or through His people and wished I had been alive then to witness it? And, when the lessons rolled around again, I would wish the same and that God would do those types of amazing, supernatural things today. He hadn't.
And, the world was in quite a mess. Wars, anti-war protests, wounded veterans, kidnappings, missing children on milk cartons—why did they do that to us? It made me feel so helpless. What were the odds that an abducted child would be enrolled in public school? Does anyone know?
Anyway, I decided that maybe she knew what she was croaking... did I say croaking? I meant talking... about after all. Clearly, everyone else in the group shared her view.
Perhaps I'd been mistaken...
It's crazy how I let the"that was then, this is now" statement about the Bible infect so many of my life decisions for about the next 10 years or so.
I wasn't aware of it at the time, but the lie subtly worked it's way into my subconscious and skewed my entire mindset. But I pressed on. Certain I had a firm grasp on the knowledge the Bible held within its pages.
The problem with that?
I didn't open it much.
Like the school books that I lugged back and forth between school and home, the knowledge it contained remained locked inside if I never opened it.
Thinking I knew it all...
Naiveté struck again. 😟
I've shared that I was a believer at a very young age (Living Proof - Part 1).
I'd been taught the basic truths about God and my belief in them has never changed.
I knew I was going to heaven when I died, but that's all I knew really. Sadly, even though, I was surrounded by Christians, I'd never figured out the life application part of the Bible. And, I guess, it went undetected because I've always had a very strong moral compass.
I have to make sure you know that the Bible is a supernatural book. Within its covers, you'll discover the answers to every question as to how we should live our lives in the here and now. Every. Single. One.
Because of that lack of information and my willingness to believe the Bible was merely telling us of our need for a savior, I had a twisted belief that bordered on that of deism.
I had no doubt God existed and that I will reside in heaven with Him one day. But until then, I was supposed to live my life trying to be the best person I could be and during times of trouble, I could call out to God to help and hope that He chose to come to my aid.
I have thought about those years and my warped view of who God is. I've wondered why no one ever figured out that my thinking was askew and tried to help me get on track.
I don't really have an answer to that. But, because I didn't have the correct information, I didn't grow spiritually as I should have. I had no experience in looking to my Bible to guide me in dealing with life so my judgment was sometimes poor. I was often too quick to believe what someone was telling me.
Yep, the 2nd definition of naive fit me pretty well.
Where's the beef?
Paul described people like me as remaining babes in Christ. I was in that phase for around 20 years. 😐
It made sense to only instill the great love God and Jesus have for us in a young child, but because I didn't grow spiritually very far past that point, I was handicapped.
I put a teaser out in a past post intending to share a time when I found myself staring up at a starry sky demanding to know from God what was going on! What could I have possibly done to deserve such tribulation at such a young age? I've decided not to expound on that because—well, because God said hold up. It involves people that I love and I don't need to cause any regrets. If anyone has been waiting with bated breath to hear that story, I apologize.
The particulars are not important. What is important is this: It wasn't God that had put me in that place. He doesn't work like that.
Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers and sisters. Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. ~James 1:16-17
God doesn't make bad things happen. He's all about goodness, love, and light. He is and was and will always be. He never changes.
Bad things happen because sin entered His perfect creation. He is letting things play out but has a plan in place. When it's time, He will see that it's eradicated once and for all.
You can count on it.
In the meantime, we can choose to get to know Him and trust that He is bigger than the bad stuff that happens in our lives. He will be a constant source of strength enabling us to keep on keeping on.
Can He supernaturally deliver you from something?
Yes, He can.
I don't know. But, I'm leaning toward YES!
What I know for sure is that He loves you. He has a plan for your life and it's a good plan. It starts with your salvation. If you've not accepted Jesus as your Savior, I hope today is the day! I do!
In regard to the meme, get ready to chew! We're going to get to the meat!
Thanks for stopping by. As always, you're invited to join us on Facebook. 😁
I'll be praying for you. I may not know your name, but God will know the prayer is for you!
See you next time.