The 30 Most Important Truths I’ve Learned/Experienced (1): God

These are the truths that shape my life most deeply. I have divided the 30 truths into three parts: 1) truths about God, 2) truths about leadership, 3) truths about life.

1. There is a deeper layer of reality than what can be observed by science or the senses.  This is why we need art, literature, music, poetry and theology.

2. There is a God who we can know. At the deepest level of this deeper layer is a personal God, who we can know, because God speaks – God reaches over the gap and communicates to us in ways we can understand.

3. God speaks most clearly through Jesus Christ.  This is who God is.  When I think about God, I must start and stay with Jesus.  This means that I interpret everything in the Word and in the world through the filter of the rabbi from Nazareth, the crucified-and-risen Jesus Christ.

4. Jesus loves me, this I know.  He showed his love by dying for me, and rising again.

5. God is love. For God to be love, God must be triune. If God is triune, then relationship is at the very heart of the universe.

6. Authentic faith is relational. It’s not primarily about believing the right things or performing the right rituals but right relationships with God and others.

7. Religion is an enemy of the gospel. It makes me believe that I am accepted because of what I do, how good I am, or how I compare to those around me.  This invariably leads either to arrogance (if I succeed) or despair (if I fail).

8. The gospel is not a one-time vaccination but lifelong therapy.  It is constantly rediscovering the truth that though I am more flawed than I could possibly imagine, I am more loved by God than I could possibly dream. This is simultaneously humbling and empowering.

9. Idolatry is inevitable apart from God. When I turn away from God, I inevitably try to find someone or something else to give me what only God can give me: meaning, significance, purpose, joy, hope.  Idolizing anything else destroys that thing, no matter how good it is in and of itself.

10. There’s a bigger story than my story. The world is not about me, and I am not the main character.

11. There is a difference between loving God and loving the idea of God. Loving God means accepting and submitting to God as he is, not as I imagine him to be.

12. Jesus is worth trusting. There is so much in this world that is mysterious and difficult to understand.  There is much that I do not know.  But Jesus has won my trust.  And in the areas I don’t understand, I trust him.

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