The God Facade Syndrome

Julie attends the worship service with her friends every Sunday. They often hang out and fellowship afterwards. As Julie was walking home one night, her bag, which contains important stuff like her laptop and school projects, was snatched from her. She couldn’t get it back. Later that night, as anger welled up inside her, Julie posted a rather lengthy rant on her social media account about what happened, filled with rage and anger.

 Jake, the team’s point guard of the university’s basketball team, was a big fan of a well-known basketball player who happens to be a Christian. He is always inspired when he plays, this even influenced him to attend church. One time, when their team won in a regional event, he was asked by a reporter what inspires him to play. Inspired by his favorite basketball player, he confidently said, “God, because through Him I am strengthened. Philippians 4:13, brother.”

Later that night, as their team celebrated their victory, Jake was seen drunk, and wasted. Hooking up with some girls.

GOD: IN THE MILLENIAL WORLD

In this generation, we can’t deny the fact that internet and social media serve an important role for everybody. For some, it is a platform of influence. While for others, it is for entertainment, research purposes, academics, or to set a new trend. A growing number of people struggle finding ways to fit in, so whatever is hip, whatever is trendy, they would consume and try all their best to adapt to it. So that they can assimilate to the confines of the social norms. Unfortunately, even God serves as just another trend for some, if not, for most of us.

Just because your friends attend church, and you feel like you won’t fit in if you don’t, then you would attend also. Just because your favorite artist, athlete, actor, or actress is well-known for his/her Christianity and excellent career, you would try to imitate and even attend church just to impress people. I am not saying attending church is bad. NO. Attending church is great! My only concern is, what is your intention for attending? Is it to impress people or to honor God? Is it for your own purpose or for the purpose of God? The stories mentioned above may be made up, but these are situations that God had been used as a facade.

WHO GOD IS…

If someone asks you, “Who is God?”, would you have a definite answer? For some “millennials” out there, I bet they might answer, “He is my Big Man upstairs”. Or would simply tap their chests twice and point up to the sky (or ceiling, if it’s an interior setting). Once, I even saw a post of someone who is “feeling grateful” in social media that simply says “Thank you G!”. Who in the world is “G”? Hahaha!

On a serious note, God is not just a provider, or someone who gives comfort, joy, grace, and mercy. Though He is all these, God is not limited to these.

GOD IS…

  • Creator

In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. – Genesis 1:1

In the first chapter of Genesis, we can witness God’s power of being the creator. He created the heavens and the earth, the land and the sea, the sky and the plants, all creatures, great and small. He created life, all by His words. This alone serves as the evidence that God is limitless.

  • Savior

For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord. – Romans 6:23

We are all destined to die spiritually because of sin. But because God doesn’t want that to happen to us, He exemplified an unreasonable, unwavering, selfless love for us by bringing Himself here in our world in the form of Jesus Christ. So that He can save us from death and be reconciled to Him.

  • Person

For God so loved the world that He gave his only son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. – John 3:16

God is both personal and relational. He experienced living life as a person, as Jesus. He was tempted to sin but overcame it three times over. He suffered. He carried the cross. He shed his blood.

He values you so much that He pursued you just to have a relationship with you.

Moreover, God is also mysterious. Though we may find Him everywhere, God wants us to see Him in a better view, to experience Him in a deeper way. That is why we should earnestly seek Him and pursue a deeper relationship with Him. Yes, starting a relationship with God is easy. But keeping, cultivating and growing it is much more important.

God is far more than what is in this list. As I mentioned above, God is limitless. That’s why, I encourage you to know Him more. If you’re just a new Christian, you can start small by reading 1-2 chapters of a book from the Bible, and pray sincerely. We do not want to treat God as just another trend. We don’t want to be pretentious with our relationship with Him, and feel guilty and hypocritical when we do something wrong to Him. We do not want to have a God Facade Syndrome, right? That is not what God wants either.

Whenever we’re about to do something we are unsure of, let’s ask ourselves, “Will this honor God?”

Always check what is in our hearts, after all, our relationship with God is a heart matter. Surrender all, and let him cleanse you and change you from the inside and out.

Written by: Yev Monarquia

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