Home > Freedom, Grace, Mormonism, Relationship, Spiritual Growth > When God Resists Us

When God Resists Us

September 14, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

A key point in my journey out of Mormonism and into Christianity was the distance I felt between God and myself. I spent the first 30 years of my life in the LDS system of works but only felt farther away from God as the years passed. It got to the point where I doubted the very existence of God because it seemed that no matter what I did, I could not see or feel him in my life. When I came to that point, I walked away from Mormonism and organized religion with little hope of establishing a relationship with God.

I could never figure out why, even when I was doing all of those good things, I did not feel close to God. That is, until now. God has been working with me on the issue of pride and He showed me something the other day that I think I need to share.

Pride is what was keeping me from the relationship with God that I so badly wanted. Let me see if I can explain. Any religious system that tells you that you can either earn your salvation or keep it by your own actions is a religion based on pride. That statement may step on a few toes but hear me out.

The Bible clearly teaches that it is only by grace that we are saved. Ephesians 2:8-9 is just one example of this. Since grace cannot be earned (Romans 11:6) than any attempt to do so is rejecting God’s gift to us and insisting that we pay for it even though the price is so astronomical that we would never be able to do so in a million years.

So here is the point, all of the righteous acts I do, as a Mormon or Christian, with the heart motive to earn or keep God’s grace and my place in Heaven actually puts distance between me and God.

James 4:6 says “God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.”

When I read that a few days ago I pictured a dad playing with his child. When the child begins to think they can control the situation and even overpower the dad, he placed his hand on the kid’s forehead. At first he is still close but every time he struggled or worked to get closer, the dad slowly pushed him a small distance away. When the child began to push-back and even swing in vain to reach the father, he is pushed back even more until he is a full arms-length away and flailing his arms. The more he tries, the more he is resisted and kept at a distance.

Eventually, the child tires from the struggle, stops trying so hard and even collapses on the ground with no fight left in him. He has finally submitted to the power and authority of his father. It is at this point that the dad picks him up, gives a hug and demonstrates his willingness to forgive and show grace.

How many of us have played the part of that child, trying to establish our will or ability over the Father’s? How long have we struggled with our own attempts to draw nearer to Him but only on our terms? How many of us take credit for what God has done in and through us? I know I am guilty of all of these and pride is their root.

I got tired of pushing against God and in my pride thinking that I could possibly do enough to be declared righteous in His site. All those works I did as a Mormon could not begin to get me closer to God because they were born of a prideful heart that he resisted. It was not until I humbled myself and acknowledged my absolute brokenness and the futility of trying to “work-off” my sin debt that God drew me into his presence and gave me the grace I so desperately needed. Since that time, I have fostered a relationship with my Father through a lot of those same things I did before but my motive has changed.

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  1. jboyd
    September 15, 2011 at 2:34 am

    jboyd :
    YES, YES, YES, It is always GRACE and LOVE not Works……!!!!

  1. January 18, 2012 at 10:39 pm

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