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Taking God For Granted
by Steve Countryman
10/03/2011 / Christian Living
Every day we make different kinds of judgments and/or assumptions based on available facts, knowledge, rumors and fiction which can lead to trouble. This is how you evaluate a situation, how you evaluate someone upon meeting them, how you determine if what you are hearing is believable. When those judgments are based on assumptions, problems can arise, fights erupt, hard feelings happen and misunderstandings run amuck. Not all assumptions are bad but too often assumptions are used instead of first hand knowledge. To make an assumption means to take something for granted, to take to or upon oneself, or to take possession of something, and assume power. Additionally, assumption can mean arrogance or presumption.
"One assumes" used most of the time in a non-verbal or unconfirmed way. For instance, your neighbor has a lawn mower that he is not using and he is not home. You want to "borrow" it to mow your lawn then return it before he gets home. You assume that if your neighbor had been home and you had asked, he would have let you borrow the mower. People who see no harm in making such assumptions, miss the fact that they have just committed a crime. Returning an item doesn't "fix" the fact that, without permission, borrowing is theft! When you meet someone for the first time and don't like them without taking the time to get to know them, you base your feelings on how they look or act which often results in an incorrect and incomplete analysis. When you assume, you attempt to justify your actions or beliefs. In most cases, assumption is self-motivated -- selfish, self-centered, self-serving, and self-satisfying. Benefiting self at the expense of others is the description of lust.
I have read that assumption is the lowest form of communication, but I disagree as most assumption involves no communication at all. Where no communication exists, all that is left is misunderstandings and assumptions. Two of the things that caused Satan to fall from Heaven were pride and arrogance. Assumption is a very real form of arrogance as it serves self in a prideful way. It starts out with the belief in your own ability to judge with godlike and superior impartiality, then moves towards casual indifference then based on a belief as to the person's insignificance, and then to total indifference or hatred. My guess is that most divorces started out that same way. Failure to communicate, leads to assumptions. Then reconciliation cannot take place without communication that is already missing. Communication is critical to resolving any dispute or clearing up any misunderstanding. Guess what Satan doesn't want you to do? He doesn't want you to talk it over with the other party. Instead, he wants you to talk to everyone else about it, to stir it up so that others' assumptions justify your assumptions, feelings and actions. Of course, you never told them that it was all based on your assumptions. Ignorance, laziness, pride, arrogance, lack of knowledge, and lack of wisdom all lead to assumption.
The really shameful part is that we Christians often treat God the same way. How many times do we make assumptions about God, His Word, His ways and His commands all because we didn't take the time to learn more about God and spend time in His Word? How often do we take God and His goodness for granted, do we blame God for our problems, do we blame God for our own poor decisions and bad choices? How often do we assume that God agrees with our thinking or assumptions? In the wilderness, one of the sins that the Israelites committed was the tempting God/Christ. Sometimes we assume that the sin that we continue to commit is okay with God, or that God looks the other way or, worse yet, that God blesses you even in your sin or that God will "bless your mess'. This is taking God and all His bounty for granted which is tempting Christ. This is casual indifference towards God, and treats God worse than you treat earthly friends.
God is God! God is not your everyday friend or acquaintance. God is not your buddy that you can take advantage of. Neither is God your "genie in a bottle." God is not a god to be put on a shelf then taken down to use or abuse when you feel the need. I know that I have been guilty of such things from time to time in the past and have asked forgiveness from God. God wants to bless you beyond your wildest dreams. Do not let your own assumption about God hinder or block the great things that God has for you today! Spend some time in prayer and ask the Holy Spirit to help guide you through all of your habits and routines that abuse God and His blessings. Ask for forgiveness for all those times you took God for granted. Are you ready?!?
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