Context! Context! Context!

85H

by Laura Adams

Eve wasn’t even hungry…
There was nothing lacking in her world.
Her heart was full of only good feelings.
There was no discontent within her mind.

The Mother of all Living was created complete and content.
She had entered into the vibrancy of Life itself!
Every need was already abundantly being met relationally, emotionally, physically and mentally.
The one thing she had never yet experienced was temptation

Sometimes we think that our circumstances are the reason we sin.
“I wouldn’t have done that if …”
“ I would truly be happy if only I could have…”
“ I wouldn’t be so bothered about these things if…”

The Truth is, Sin itself is to step outside the rhythm of Gods perfect provision and to try to feed the desires of our own soul in our own will and way.
Now, because sin has entered the world, we are always wanting…
It is in the space of “wanting” where temptation can lead us to doubt God’s love and Sovereignty.

Wanting to be married when we are single…
Wanting children when we are barren…
Wanting more than what we currently have.

It isn’t the wanting itself that is sin… but what we end up doing with that desire.
When that desire becomes uppermost in our thoughts, we begin to worship the longing itself. It becomes the “desire of our heart…”
If God does not grant it, we often feel betrayed.

When we read Scripture, we are told “Context rules content.” Context is the overall theme, and content is the specific details within that framework. We often tend to read Scripture as if it is a foreign reality that we are trying to understand and apply to our very different lives. But in actuality, the bible is a just a historical account of God relating to His people. People who live in a real context just like us.

The context of wanting
What do we do when the desires of our heart are being unmet or delayed through long quiet seasons?
How does that affect our perspective of God?
Because our perspective of God is the “Context” in our story!

When we realize that every detail of our life is just a “container” that we get to fill with faith or fear, it changes the way we look at our life story. Each container is just an opportunity to reveal the context that Jesus Christ really is our Savior and Lord. This is our opportunity to display Him (or not) by our response to how He is writing our story…

Some of us still look at the story itself as being the main point of life.
Whether or not we marry…
Whether or not we have kids…
Whether or not we live in comfort and convenience…
Whether or not we feel accomplished…

But, what if the main point of the story is how we yield to God’s pen?
No matter what He writes…

Eve already had everything she could possibly want…
The temptation simply invited her to doubt God’s pen…
The deception snared her heart. It caused her to question God’s love and Authority…
The decision to take matters into her own hands came after the choice to disbelieve God’s Word…

There will always be the temptation to believe that what we want is being wrongly withheld from us. Especially, if what we want is a good and right thing.

Yet, if we had a “book” in the bible, what would it look like to read how temptation swept us off our faith? Could we see the grand arch of redemption as the “context” in which all of our scenarios were just containers used by God to teach us to respond to Him in trust?

Would we see His patient plan to rescue us from our own selfishness?
Would we wince at our stubborn refusal to obey?
Would we weep at His tender commitment to His covenant and promise?

When Jesus entered in to time and space, we call that the “Incarnation,” or the Word became flesh…
When we desire to let the Holy Spirit interpret our situations and circumstances in the light of God’s eternal purposes, He breathes Jesus’ eternal Life to our Story. He becomes “incarnate.” He steps into our circumstances and makes sense of what He has written. He teaches us to trust the meaning in the madness… or even the mundane.

This is how we give God glory…
Even when what we want isn’t happening…
The world wants us to interpret life as a way to have what we want
God would have us interpret what we want, as an opportunity to have life!

CONTEXT! CONTEXT! CONTEXT!

As we learn the Truth of God’s Word, we must also learn to use our circumstances as a way to “flesh out” what is written. Scripture is not a “separated” spiritual reality any more than dirty diapers and board meetings are faithless and futile! There is no line between the “sacred” and the “secular!” ALL things are spiritual, and all things are used by God to flesh out faith

The Gospel is Good news… not good advice. It is our historical heritage and it should change the way we view life.

May we begin to read our own stories in the context of eternal reality!
And may we find God in the waiting… and the wanting of life!

Amen!

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