What about our loving and caring people, huh? Those that keep a foot in the door for some of us. The door of salvation, the door to eternal life, the door to a personal relationship with God. Holding the door ajar for some who appear to carelessly have shut the door on the face of Jesus Christ.
Quietly they've kept trusting because they know that God too dearly loves someone dear to their own heart. They've never lost hope that one day their heart will be softened, their ears unstopped, their minds enlightened - and all by the merciful reach of God. You have a friend like that? A Mom? A Dad? Aunt, Uncle, cousin?
They just keep on praying.
For those who in anger shut the door;
In ignorance, walked past the door;
With disbelief, laugh at the door.
In busyness, are oblivious of the door.
Yesterday I read "The Shack." In my humble opinion the author (William Paul Young) of The Shack makes our incredible, awesome, powerful God just too man-like, and way too common. Actually the author presented God the Father as a black woman; Jesus as a homely Mid-Eastern man in saw-dusty work clothes; and the Holy Spirit as an Asian woman.
This large and oh-so-stereotypical matronly African-American woman is God (or at least an anthropomorphism of God she chose to take on in order to communicate with Mack). Throughout the story she is known as Papa. Near the end, because Mack requires a father figure, she turns into a pony-tailed, grey-haired man, but otherwise God is this woman. Jesus is a young to middle-aged man of Middle-Eastern (i.e. Jewish) descent with a big nose and rather plain looks while the Holy Spirit is played by Sarayu, a small, delicate and eclectic woman of Asian descent. By this point many people will choose to close the book and be done with it. But for the purposes of this review, let’s just assume you are able to get past seeing God and the Holy Spirit portrayed in this way and let’s press on. Read more by CHALLIES.COM.This holy three-some banters with each other as they cook together, spend the day together, do things for Mack together. The read was interesting and many times emotional. I talked with Mom this morning (she read the book) and mentioned that I felt the way the author presented God was a lot different than the way John writes about God in Revelation, so majestic. Previously she had said of the book, "It's just too different."
Young's fiction novel hints at teachings from the Bible but does not quote any. Eugene Peterson's quote: "This book has the potential to do for our generation what John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress did for his. It's just that good!" Even though it appears to be popular in Christian circles, I feel this quote is an exaggeration.
There are redeeming qualities about this write that I will acknowledge. It will make people more aware of the ever-present God - the Holy Spirit we can count on everyday. He is always with us and never leaves us. The fact that life continues, spiritually, even though we cannot see those that have passed away, they are still alive, spiritually. Another idea I came away with is that God did not come to establish organizations, but He wants to grow relationships. I totally agree with that. We don't need more committee's, more clubs, more churches, but we do need a relationship with God and even with others "of like precious faith."
This is where the heart to pray over and over for someone that we love comes from. The relationship we have - or want with someone we love. This tugs at our hearts because the relationship we have with God (via His Son) is precious to us and we want that for others. It is comforting when we need comfort. It is Truth where there does not seem to be truth around us. It is grace in daily life. It brings us the promise of Life eternal. We want all that and more for our family and our friends who have not met our Savior this way ---yet.
Today, I've thanked God for friends and relationships, ones that included prayer for the Holy Spirit's gentle wooing to continue in my life.
Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. Revelation 3:20.