Limiters of God

Yesterday we talked about our being imitators of God as Paul counseled us in Ephesians 5:1.  One of my really good and smart friends wrote back with the following, “Saw the subject line.  And between my old age and dyslexic eye sight. . . I thought it said ‘Limitators’!   I thought—WOW—what a fantastic new word to describe certain personalities. I could just imagine where you were headed. . . Then I saw what the word should have been. . . But, I still like ‘limitators’. . . We limit God’s love. We limit His work.”
His misreading was an amazing idea.  We are limiters of God.  We call ourselves Christians, meaning Christ-like, and so often are not Christ-like.  Others see us and think, “So that’s what Christ is like.”  It is appalling.  Gandhi once said he would have been a Christian except for all the Christians he met. 

My friend went on in his response by quoting a verse from the old hymn, There’s a Wideness in God’s Mercy.
“But we make His love too narrow
By false limits of our own;
And we magnify His strictness
With a zeal He will not own.”   By Fredrick W. Faber in 1854
I am envious that I did not write this.  It is so on-target.  We are so quick to condemn the lost and to make excuses for ourselves.  We condemn other’s music because we don’t like it and on and on we go.  What an incredible challenge it is for us to rightfully show others what Jesus is really like.  If we do that we will have shown them what God is like because Jesus said, “If you have seen me you have seen the Father.”  John 14:9