Out of God’s Way

Does God really want us to get out of his way? You’ve probably heard this and silently agreed, believing, as I have, that getting the self out of the way is the humble, Christian attitude we are all to possess. While it’s true that we are to die to self, meaning we die to our natural, carnal desires by being crucified with Christ (Galatians 2:20), are we in God’s way? I submit the answer is no – no more than a child is in the way of a loving parent.

I rank this phrase right up there with being used by God to accomplish his will. Saying we are in his way implies we are a hindrance. This not only can make us feel guilty and worthless, but it casts God in a bad light. God’s sole purpose is not simply to bring glory and praise to himself, as though he’s a giant egomaniac, and he sees us as preventing this. I’m pretty sure getting us out of his way is the farthest thing from his mind.

God created us to be in relationship with him. He loves us so much, he has gone above and beyond to ensure we have everything we need for lives of godliness and to bring us to the measure of his fullness (2 Peter 1:3 and Ephesians 3:19). We are not hindering his will, not preventing him from receiving all glory, praise and honor; rather we are participants in the life of Christ, in his love and grace and his master plan of a beautiful eternity with him. In fact, God has gone out of his way to put us in his way, right next to his heart, where we all belong.

God wants right relationship

“Yes, Adam’s one sin brings condemnation for everyone, but Christ’s one act of righteousness brings a right relationship with God and new life for everyone” (Romans 5:18, NLT).

Relationships are the most rewarding part of life but can also be the most traumatic and painful. Some are easy to get into and easily maintained. Some take real work and can be rocky. Some go sour no matter what we do. Countless books have been written and many people earn their living giving advice on getting along with others and relating well. It seems there are no easy answers to relationship problems.

Something most people don’t realize about God is he is all about relationship. Even though God hates sin and the horrible consequences, he’s not as interested in the rules as most believe. Laws are easily broken by us and generously forgiven by him, all taken care of by the blood of Christ. Because we are forgiven in Christ, we are free from the law, free from sin and death and free to be in right relationship with him. We are free to get to know him as he wants to be known—as a loving Father who gives good gifts to his children, especially love, which helps us be in right relationship with each other too.

What a relief to see God from this perspective and to know him this way!