Our Image of God is Vitally Important. More than we realize often. it is foundational, not only to our Christian Faith but also to our Prayer-Life, seeing the Blessing of God, Answered Prayers, Experiencing Him in our daily lives.
It is also of paramount importance to how we feel about Him....and ourselves....and our conduct towards others.
YES, IF WE HAVE A POOR IMAGE OF GOD, IT AFFECTS OUR PERSONAL WALK WITH THE LORD - HOW WE RELATE TO HIM AND ALSO, THE WAY/WAYS HE CAN RELATE WITH US.
Please believe me when I say these things are true. As a Christian, I have walked with a Good Image and also a Poor Image. Others have had the same experience. Many of us need healing in this area, because times are difficult and if we are honest, we don't know all the answers - the "whys and the hows".
For me, I had such a close walk with and Image of Jesus that was central in my life.
A walk of Peace, Love and Joy with a Wonderful Savior, "beautiful beyond description"
as the song goes. There were a few healings and miracles in answer to spontaneous faith. I loved the personal experience of reading His Words and they were very real to me. Gradually, attendance of too many services somehow changed the vitality of that.
And then, when I needed simple-faith the most, to lift me out of a medical induced condition that came my way - very distressing, and He actually tried to spare me of by giving me a deep sense of Peace so I would not attend an appointment - I found myself floundering for some months and this had a damaging affect on releasing my faith.
After relentless pressure, my image of God was also damaged.
Looking back, one relates with the other. Your faith can only be as strong as your image of Jesus. If your image of Him is affected - or becomes affected - so is the expression of your faith. It is difficult to release it.
And on the contrary to what some would say, too much "seeing the preacher/preachers move in the miraculous" can affect your own spontaneity of faith - it starts to be the preacher/preachers instead of you. At least more often. Yes, it can actually have a damaging effect because our personal faith for healings and miracles is lacking in exercise. It is the preacher/preachers and their God instead of us and our God.
So we need to protect our Image of God in more ways than one, shall we say? It is not how the "preacher/preachers move in faith".....it's how we release our faith. The misunderstanding of this accounts for why so many fail to receive their healing. Even lots of preaching on healing can make us immune to it - so to speak. Repetition can bring revelation - as some say - but this is the personal voice inside of you (what you see in scripture) not the words of someone-else all the time.
Speaking for myself, I desired to return to Simplicity in my walk with Jesus and He honored this. I needed to come aside from the other to regain the Vitality in my Walk with Him. When Jesus spoke of "Abiding in the Vine" He was referring to Himself as the Vine (I AM the Vine) not the church - building, preacher, services - not even the Body of Christ, but the very Person of JESUS. Yes "Christ in us, the Hope of Glory" not all the outward things - good as some of them may be. "if you Abide in Me, you will know the Truth and (HE) will set you Free!"
HAVE YOU EVER BEEN TREATED POORLY BY A FELLOW CHRISTIAN?
EVEN A PREACHER (some have) KNOW THIS, THEY HAVE A POOR IMAGE OF GOD and SOMETIMES THEMSELVES.
IF OUR IMAGE IS WHOLE, OUR BEHAVIOR WILL BE APPROPRIATE.
THE BETTER OUR IMAGE (of God and ourselves) THE BETTER WE FEEL AND ACT TOWARDS OTHERS.
CONCERNING OUR IMAGE OF GOD
Sometimes when we pray and we don't sense The Lord's presence, it is because of negativity - He is not located there (in negativity) He is Light. So when you are praying, turn your face towards the sun instead of the shadows.(poetic language). We do this with thoughts of cheerfulness, meditating on His Goodness and Loving Kindness.
It is true, in a sense that Jesus will sit where you sit....but also, that He loves it when you are standing up on the inside because "we are seated with Him in Heavenly Places" (spiritually speaking). We are "made Alive in Him" and "He
has commanded His Blessing towards us".....He speaks well of you everyday.
Yes, He is a Benevolent God, and sometimes negative things in life can affect our
Image of His Nature. So constantly, we need to renew our thoughts about His
True Nature - thinking of good things He has done for us, and Scriptures that speak of Him this way.
Sometimes when we are not sensing Him in our day or our lives, it can be for the same reason - negative thoughts are in our mind, and He does not dwell there, He dwells in Light. So let your thoughts be drawn to the Light and you will find Him there - His Presence will be with you as you focus on things pertaining to His Goodness;
His Joy in Creation; His Benevolence; His Loving-Kindness.
Try not to limit this to times of prayer but through your day and evening as well.
This is cultivating His Presence. And when this becomes your lifestyle, His blessings start to flow.
Yes, don't let negative thoughts fill your mind - that is to give them permission. Over time, it can affect the way you think about Him and yourself in relationship to Him. So whatever is lovely, true, of a good report and praiseworthy - think of these things and the God of Peace will be with you.
A TRUE IMAGE OF GOD WHEN YOU PRAY - AND BELIEVING IN YOUR PRAYERS - WILL RESULT IN ANSWERED PRAYERS BECAUSE IT WILL STRENGTHEN YOUR FAITH. YOU WON'T STRUGGLE WITH DOUBTS.
A few years ago, I was very upset one day. My thoughts were so disturbing and became gloomy. I looked faintly to The Lord for 20 secs and I heard Him say these words "clothe yourself in Truth and I will minister to you". I quickly focused on a few words I knew to be True (in faith) and He gave me a sense of His presence that allayed anxious thoughts that had affected me and the rest of the day was happy. It made a difference to that week.
He said the words "learn of Me" to my mother one day, years ago.....so our Image of Him: His Goodness, Faithfulness and Loving-Kindness is important to Him as well.....it is the central part of how we relate to Him and Him to us!
HE IS REAL
"Rejoice Always" and the God of Gladness shall be with you. You can put on Joy, Love and Peace by choice. Yes you can switch on your happy-mode, just like faith. Start today and He will bless.