'Day One' Blog

Commodity or King?

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I have to be painfully honest about how deeply influenced I am by present culture, as well as by “Christian Culture”. So melded are the ways of the Western Church with Western consumer-oriented thinking, I don’t think any of us are fully aware of how deeply that impacts us. I keep wanting to hit “delete” and write about another subject, but I feel a very strong pull to keep exploring here, as if there is a deep deception that must be exposed. I believe the implications will change the whole color-pallet I’m using to paint life with, because there is something foundational here that is up-side-down.

Two positions surface for me. One: that I view God primarily as a commodity. I see it as I look honestly at myself, in how I process life and intersect with people. I see it in the way we “do church”, in what we value as a Christian community. I see it as we evangelize, making a case for “becoming a Christian”. I don’t always and only see this, but it is a dominating theme in these modern times. The second position: that I view Him as King. This I see far less often; a person secure in their view that life is lived out as a representative of I AM. Can there be some overlap? I’m not sure. See what you think as you read a description of both.

~Commodity~

God is primarily an asset to me…. a commodity that I highly value and call upon in the hopes of satisfying particular needs. I am consumer minded; goal oriented; success driven. So, “God the Commodity” plays very well in the grand scheme for me. I have a much better chance at achieving my objectives in life with Him as resource #1. I call upon Him to enter in, to bless, to council, to provide. He is grafted in to my life….”my life”.

~King~

God is King. I am in His service by nature of my connectedness to Him through Jesus. I am an emissary, a steward, a messenger. He calls me to enter in to His agenda and be part of His Kingdom work. He doesn’t need me. He offers me the opportunity to participate. He takes me to people and places……. He takes me….. So, I am there at His request, by His invitation. He stays with me there and by His Spirit reveals what He has in mind as it pertains to my involvement…so that I know what I am to contribute or take away. He empowers me to make that contribution and guides me in absorbing what He means for me to glean. The whole encounter is meant to bring Him glory, to reveal His loving heart toward humanity, drawing people to Himself. When it’s done, He takes me to whatever is next.

When those in Scripture encountered The Lord, they bowed, as one would in the presence of someone entirely other than themselves. They bent their knee or fell as though they were dead. There was no mistaking the immeasurable cavern between the greatness of God and the small-ness of humanity. God is not just King. He is Father, Savior, Creator and all manner of other things. But none of those other relationships in any way diminish His Kingship.

I guess my challenge is that you might take these two positions with you today. See if God might have anything at all to reveal to you. One of the threads in this for me, that is congruent with so much of what God has been speaking to me about, has to do with Lordship. Commodity-oriented-living sets me in the position of Lordship. Kingship-living sets God on the throne, and that’s why I believe this is such a critical path to explore. Thoughts?

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10 Comments

  • Nancy

    1

    I like this: Oswald Chambers said, “The things that Jesus did were of the most menial and commonplace order, and this is an indication that it takes all of God’s power in me to do the most commonplace things in His way. Can I use a towel as He did? Towels and dishes and sandals, all the ordinary, sordid things of our lives, reveal more quickly than anything what we are made of. It takes God Almighty incarnate in us to do the meanest duty as it ought to be done.”

  • Melissa Jayne Bokron

    2

    I had a wise friend just say to me that in regard to what I am praying to God about, that I don't give Him many options. And I thought, "Wait...God doesn't need options, does He? He has a sovereign plan, working itself out providentially in my life...right? I'm trying to align myself beneath that plan." BUT, if I am honest and see how I can regard him as a commodity, then my prayers might restrain him from moving more powerfully in and through my life. As King, I simply say "Your will. Your way." This always confuses me and my approach to prayer...but that's for another blog post :) xo mb <

    • Anne Barbour

      3

      Most of my prayers are void of a wish list. But, if I'm thinking it anyway I still ask for what I want. There is no point in not putting it before Him. But He gets to take that request and do with it what pleases Him. I trust Him in that. I assume His ways will befuddle me most of the time. Why wouldn't they? He tells me my best paid plans ultimately lead to death. But submitted to Him, they have a change to expand and become something more. He dreams bigger than I do. He can have my dreams and grow them, or destroy them, or trim them.... or whatever. He knows better than I do what the path to freedom and wholeness is.

  • Jackie Rettbeerg

    5

    Hi friend! So much a part of my life in these years with Him has been listening to what He wanted, what He was planning, and what would please Him. It took time to learn but the freedom that came has, of, course been a result of His unrelenting grace and made life such a joy to live. It never stops cause just when I think I've pretty well got it, He gently reminds again that He is King and I must kneel at the throne and not try and sit there with Him. Love you and love what you write, Jackie

    • Anne Barbour

      6

      Yes. It's a subtlety that sets in before we know it, especially in this So. Cal. sub-culture, where we practice sometimes extreme familiarity, to the point that we forget who it is we belong to. I know God wants us to be confident and comfortable with Him. However, I'm afraid we're in danger of assuming the friendship He offers negates the respect He is due as our King. His Spirit helps us understand where the balance is. Thanks for your words, Jackie!

  • Brie Hawkins

    7

    Such a convicting thought! I feel it is so true that naturally as Western Christians, we quickly identify with God as a commodity before identification as a King in our life. Somehow we make God into something He isn't and almost in a weird way diminish His power that could be present in our lives if we regarded Him as King ALL the time. How sad it is that this is so!

    • Anne Barbour

      8

      That's a very good thought. How might we diminish His power? What would that look like?

      • Nancy

        9

        I just heard a sermon on the thought that our job is not to fight the darkness; rather, our job is to shine the light. We are reflectors of His light. When we do not share Jesus with others and do not show Him to them by "reflecting His light" in the way we were created to do in order to bring him glory, we limit or diminish His glory to others and limit His power in us. We limit the way in which the Holy Spirit can work in and through us. The brightness of the light in us depends on the number of layers that it has to go through. This made me stop and think!

        • Anne Barbour

          10

          Very interesting thought. True Christ followers ARE light. As the process of transformation takes place, the light in us intensifies and Jesus is seen more clearly (less layers to go through!). You are right, that our presence as light bearers, dispels darkness. It's another picture of us simply being in the presence of Jesus, allowing Him control in and through us, and then watching His Spirit draw people to Himself. It's a pretty miraculous notion to recognize that God invites us to be part of the wooing of lost souls.

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