"A picture is worth a thousand words." A classic phrase that illustrates the power of a snapshot to define or characterize an opinion or standing on a matter or person. In advertising we see this principle played out constantly in ads in print, TV and other digital media platforms. Ad companies are hired by businesses to build positive pictures and associations with their brands, so you as a consumer hold them in your mind in a good light, etc. In life it also rings true in the way we hold people in our memory. We "see them" when we think of them, i.e.; we recall a past sum of experiences. (What that picture looks like determines their standing with us.) For example, if a person has hurt us, or been vicious in any way we would have a negative picture of them in our mind. Conversely, if a person has been kind, generous, etc. we would have a favorable picture in our mind, right? These pictures are worth a thousand words, so the quote says. These pictures are the summarization of our personal experiences and feelings. Friend, this got me to thinking about how people hold God in their mind and what that picture looks like? Why? Because how we paint that picture determines so much in our relationship to Him. You see some people have a picture of an aloof, distant, punitive creator who isn't tangible or loving painted! They see God as impossible to please, unrealistic or even uncaring. Perhaps these pictures were formed because of disappointments in life, hurt relationships, loss of loved ones, etc? Friend how do you see God in your mind? This picture needs to be accurate! My hope for tonight is to help you see God in the light of His full character and not a distortion painted by lies from the enemy! Perhaps you had a legalistic experience at a church? Maybe you were shunned or shamed by "believers?" Maybe your dad left you or rejected you or was abusive? Don't associate the perfect, pure love of our Heavenly Father with wicked deeds of sinful flesh! When we take the entire Bible from Genesis to Revelation and learn about our Holy Father Jehovah God we can definitely paint a picture of Him! Here is my portrait (only some of my thousand words) He is love, He is slow to anger, He is faithful, He is gracious, He cares, He is compassionate, He desires relationship with us, He is present, He is our protector, He understands, He disciplines His children, He restores His children, He loves to bless us, He knows us intimately, He created us and all creation, everything good came from Him! He rewards faith! He is generous, He opposes the haughty, arrogant and proud! He never shames, manipulates, extorts, or leaves us. He forgives and forgets our sins when we confess and repent! He is our rock, our hope! He empowers us to be holy, pure and full of His love, thanks to our personal relationship with His Son Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior! There you go that's only part of my picture! That beautiful picture is with me always! It is alive in me because He is alive working through me! Tonight how do you see God? It will determine much about your relationship with Him! I love Matthew 7:7-12 it paints a wonderful portrait of how accessible our Heavenly Father is to us! Ask Him to help you have the right picture of Him! He will! 7"Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.
9 “Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? 11 If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! Thanks for letting me share, Randy Young