Those who have walked with God for any length of time have come to know Him with particular traits. We can identify God with particular names. It reveals not only the character of the Lord Almighty, it reveals who He is directly. Some call Him Redeemer, Savior, Healer, Provider, the Alpha and the Omega, Deliverer, Warrior, Lion of Judah, Everlasting Peace, Comforter, Abba Father. These are just a few names that His children call Him. This week I had a revelation about these names and the character of the Holy One of Israel, Jehovah.
It came while I was reading out of The One Year Experiencing God’s Presence Devotional Guide. Here is what I read:
“Never in Scripture does God define Himself by the hardships of His people. In fact, the hardships often set up a demonstration of His goodness. It takes a sickness to reveal a Healer, a captivity to reveal a Deliverer, or a war to reveal a Warrior. Our need creates an occasion for Him to show who He is. So when we are hurting, it isn’t a sign of His disfavor. It may actually be a sign of His desire to meet us at a point of need.”
I hadn’t thought of it that way before and it struck me. You might call it my AHA moment. It hit me upside the head and made me stop and think. It was the realization and knowledge of my own sinfulness that revealed God as the Redeemer. It was the difficult predicament, that precarious situation, that revealed Jehovah as the Deliverer. It was in the death of my grandmother that I came to know Him as Comforter. It was in loneliness that revealed Him as Abba Father. And it is in emptiness that God is revealed as Provider.
No one wants knowledge of their own sinfulness. No one goes into a precarious situation thinking “oh, this is no big deal.” No one that I know of wants someone close to them to die. But it is in these very circumstances that God is revealed to His children. I don’t know what you are dealing with in your own life, but I know what I’m dealing with in mine. Many times it is simply in the overwhelming experiences of life, that never stopping roller coaster that produces an unending supply of challenges, that allow us to know God at a deeper level. We may pray to know God, but I don’t know of anyone who prays that all those other things happen in their life.
So what does all this mean? For me it simply means that I will continue to pray to know God more deeply, more intimately. And in doing so, I will understand the challenges will help me to cling a little tighter, look a little more closely, pray a little more earnestly. And when those challenges come, I will look to God to reveal His character in the midst of them. He will do it. That’s what makes Him God, the Great Jehovah.