Naked Before God and the Wonder of it All

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Last time, we ended with my saying that in this next post, it would be time to look at the concept of naked before God in a practical rather than an abstract way, so it might seem odd to begin with the wonder of relationship with God. Yet I think you’ll see that this is exactly the right place to begin.

Small children view the world around them quite differently that we adults do; they can still see their worlds with a sense of wonder. When I was a small child, my Mom was proud of her roses; she had roses in bloom year round. I remember that as a small child, I loved the smell of her roses and it never even occurred to me that boys would be thought weird for smelling them. However, I grew up, and now I am not really sure what they smell like. As a small child I could lay in the grass on a warm summer day and watch the clouds in the sky as they floated along; I was filled with wonder… but I grew up, and I can’t remember how long it’s been since I’ve really noticed a cloud.

When I was seven years old, my family drove from Los Angeles to Wichita Falls, Texas on vacation to see my grandparents. I remember how many hours I spent looking out the window of the car at all of the strange sights along the way; desert, mountains, grasslands, rivers… all so much different than the suburbs where we lived, and I was filled with wonder at how big the world seemed to me. I remember how amazed I was at how different Texas felt; the air was heavier than California, the sun wasn’t as hot, but I always seemed to feel wet; amazing, fascinating, wonders never before experienced, but then I grew up; it was humid and miserable in Texas!

When I was a “new” Christian, the whole idea of “talking to God” was a matter of wonder for me; that God, the very One who created everything, would actually notice me… Wonder is the only word for it.

But then I “grew up” so to speak, and relationship with God became the norm, something I “do” and I lost track of the wonder of it all. In truth, it became more like a ritual or a practice than something so incredibly awesome and amazing as it seemed at first; I began to take it for granted.

I was a busy man with an important job. I had worries, concerns, responsibilities; time with God was at a premium, and my concerns became the subject of my prayers; OK God, here’s what I need from you…

A corporate relationship with God can become like that as well; there’s a certain order of things, you stand up here, and now you sit down. I like that song, but not this one (looking at watch) come on, let’s get down to business; time is money…

Being naked before God is all about being real, about taking all of the games, self-importance, pride, and selfishness away; it’s about surrendering to Him. So you want a practical first step?

Find the wonder again.

We can find the wonder of being in God’s presence again by slowing down, smelling roses, watching the clouds roll by, feeling a warm breeze and actually taking notice of the wondrous little things that we haven’t paid attention to in years. We must reclaim the wonder we had at first at the very thought that the God who created the universe would even notice that we exist, the wonder of knowing that He cares about us, the wonder of knowing that God Himself loves ME and YOU.

We reclaim that wonder by never taking Him for granted; that’s where humility can be found, because wonder requires humility and being naked before God requires both.

Step one is slow down and bask in His glory, sing praises to His glory, thank Him for loving you, marvel in His presence and stay there for a while and ask Him to bring the wonder back into your life. Be sure, you wait for His relpy, since He isn’t normally in a big rush to end a conversation.

That’s enough for today, I think. There is so much more to say, but for now, I look forward to your observations.

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About Don Merritt

A long time teacher and writer, Don hopes to share his varied life's experiences in a different way with a Christian perspective.
This entry was posted in Christian Life and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

22 Responses to Naked Before God and the Wonder of it All

  1. Kitsy says:

    There is another way: pray for total reconciliation, pray to God to forgive everyone who has ever abused or neglected you from birth to the present, pray to have all bitterness and resentment removed from your heart, watch everything be taken from you (home, income, savings, credit, credibility, friends, possessions, reputation, etc., and start over with nothing left but your awareness of God’s presence.

    It’s amazing how well that works.

  2. Kitsy says:

    Ooops.

    However, I recommend your way over mine. I would not wish my life on anyone.

  3. Kitsy says:

    I have had a very hard life, Don. I describe some of it in my earlier blogs … the ones listed across the top of my 5022 page. I have come very close to giving up and stepping off the stage…several times.

    I am now 60 and life is finally good. I am hoping God approves of how I am trying to act as an ambassador for Christ in the ministry of reconciliation to Him and that He will allow me to live this way a little longer.

  4. pipermac5 says:

    O Lord, our Lord,
    How excellent is Your name in all the earth,
    Who have set Your glory above the heavens!

    2 Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants
    You have ordained strength,
    Because of Your enemies,
    That You may silence the enemy and the avenger.

    3 When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers,
    The moon and the stars, which You have ordained,
    4 What is man that You are mindful of him,
    And the son of man that You visit him?
    5 For You have made him a little lower than the angels,
    And You have crowned him with glory and honor.

    6 You have made him to have dominion over the works of Your hands;
    You have put all things under his feet,
    7 All sheep and oxen—
    Even the beasts of the field,
    8 The birds of the air,
    And the fish of the sea
    That pass through the paths of the seas.

    9 O Lord, our Lord,
    How excellent is Your name in all the earth! (Psalm 8)

  5. That was a great post. God bless.

  6. TangentSpace says:

    ‘Wonder’fully written. : )

  7. I love your openness, and I identify with the life processes you share.

  8. Matt Brumage says:

    So, the deep theological approach to total exposure before God begins with the cliche to stop and smell the roses? Okay. I’m good with that. I have some roses in my front yard that too often seem inconvenient, thorny, rubbing the window noisily, and difficult to prune (see prior thorn reference). What if I looked at them with the wonder their Creator intended? What if there was a lesson in the thorns I’ve been too irritated to learn? Perhaps it’s time to wonder about flowers again.

    • Don Merritt says:

      Matt, I only wish I knew a way to take all three of your comments and have them show up together, as I just read them. My reply to the first two would be: Is there a larger context? (to the first one, and Is there a larger context? to the second one and to this one…?

      Yes, that’s exactly right: stop and smell the roses!

      When I took algebra in school, I had a very hard time with it because I couldn’t see why they made us learn it; “what is it used for?” I asked over and over, and nobody would tell me the answer; they just told me to sit down and shut up. I resented being forced to take it because if they couldn’t or wouldn’t tell me what it was for, then I decided they were just wasting my time!

      As a result, I was really asking all of the wrong questions, because I would not have faith in my teachers that they knew what they doing, and algebra was an unnecessary struggle for me. Oh, for the record, I still got an “A” but I had to work at it.

      I missed the big picture.

      With God, we let ourselves get tangled up in the details, in little questions and little contexts, but when we see the big picture by seeing the larger context, we also see the answers to the little questions, the little details that hang us up.

      Wonder IS the big picture, both here and in 1 John.

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  10. Alicia S. says:

    Don,

    First I want to say a sincere thank you. I have read many of your posts off and on and just came across this series. It is such a God timing thing that I happened to see it now in the spiritual season a I am currently in. This particular post in the series so far is the exact answer to a question I have been asking for months now. I have been asking and speaking to the Lord about my walk with Him. My Fire is still lit but I have been at a place of “Father God, I know there is so much more to You that is not being taught or preached. What is it? Father God, I want the next level of deeper intimacy with You but I’m not sure how to get there. How do I get there?” Those have been the cries of my heart. This post answers that. Regain the wonder to learn humility/vulnerability.

    What a step this is for me. I came to this post because during those months of me asking these I have been seeking and searching for the answers; through the Word, videos, and posts like this. Here I am reading about “nakedness” in the Bible which I have previously received a spiritual download through the story of Zacchaeus. This information goes along with that. Thank you for being obedient to Holy Spirit and allowing our Lord to use you to feed us.

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