Day 4: What’s Preventing Your Growth?
Take just a moment to think about your upbringing. As you were growing up, when did your parents or teachers most acknowledge their love and appreciation for you? Was it when you behaved well? Received good grades? Did something else that they considered to be “good?” This is likely the normal experience for most of us. But sadly, it leads to a negative and/or incorrect view of God.
In their book titled How People Grow, Henry Cloud and John Townsend write that our view of God is the greatest obstacle to our growth. They acknowledge that most people see God as a God of LAWS or a God of RULES. If we behave correctly, or do something “good” then God will reward us for it. And just as we did during our childhood, we strive to do just that, and earn a reward. But when our circumstances don’t change, we feel like we must not be behaving correctly, so we try harder and harder. But it never works.
The first real step to growth is to acknowledge that God isn’t a God of RULES…He is a God of GRACE. And GRACE is unmerited favor. It cannot be earned. It’s freely given. And must be freely received.
As you read today, consider this: Do you see God as a God of RULES or as a God of GRACE?
Romans 6:14; Hebrews 4:16; James 4:6; 1 Corinthians 15:10
When you were growing up, when did your parents or teachers most acknowledge their love and appreciation for you? In what ways do you think this may have impacted your view of God?
Be honest: Do you see God as a God of RULES or as a God of GRACE?
In what ways have you tried to earn God’s favor? What was the result?
Heavenly Father, I confess that when I think about the things that prevent me from growing, my view of who You are hasn’t been at the top of the list. Instead, I’ve thought of You as a God of RULES, and that if I would just behave better, or do good things, I would grow. Moving forward, my greatest desire is to accept Your grace, acknowledging that there’s nothing I have done or will ever do to earn it. By moving forward in this way, I can live more freely from the burden of always trying to prove myself. Grant me wisdom as I live in the light of Your grace. In Jesus’ name. Amen.