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Stop Putting God in a Box

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This past summer was a major season of reflection: a season of looking back on all that was taught in previous years, taking it in, and thanking God for everything that was learned so far. Without a doubt in my mind, each year is another opportunity and chance to allow God to be the focal point of our lives. However, I’ve come to realize that there can be times when we come up with certain misconceptions of who God is. Unfortunately, these misconceptions or beliefs that we have can easily be misinterpreted into the characteristics of God.


Before coming to Cairn last year, I was attending a secular college where I dealt with atheist professors who would bash God and religion in class constantly. Every day it was like I had to defend the God who I came to know and love over the years. For the most part, I thought I had a pretty good idea of what I believed in, and I also thought that transferring to a Christian University would be “easier” (meaning I would have a lot less conflict and zero atheist professors to deal with). It only took me a few weeks into the semester to realize that my glorious expectations were all wrong. I did not realize that I would be faced with controversial and difficult conversations regarding my faith, and I was not at all prepared to stick up for what I believed in because I assumed that I would finally be “safe” being among other believers.


By week two my peers and I were having multiple debates regarding things such as women in ministry, predestination, and spiritual gifts . . . to name a few. I found out that these were just a handful of the controversies which have, for decades, been causing division and separation among those who are in the body of Christ. There were many times last year that I would hold on to my belief as if that conviction was my entire life, and I would get so frustrated with those around me who just did not get it.


Then one day I heard God say:


“Stop putting me in a box. You can’t get to know who I am if you’re only focusing on ideas of who I am. I am much more than those ideas. Theology is not my character.”


I started to realize how much I was starting to believe in certain theological beliefs more than I was believing in who Christ said He was. It made me realize that I was placing God in a box; not restricting Him from being who He was, but rather restricting me from getting to know who He really is.


As we begin another semester here at Cairn, instead of placing our beliefs in an idea of God, let’s choose to place our focus in believing who God says He is in His Word. A God of all things good. A God of love.

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  1. Amy Snider
    September 4, 2017 at 2:10 pm

    Thank you for these good words, Ariana. I am so encouraged by young people like you who are in honest pursuit of who Jesus is and what is good and true according to God’s Word. I am an older something 🙂 and this gives me great hope in the midst of what I see from where I sit. Keep pressing on and keep loving in Jesus’ name!
    P.S. I think Cairn is one of the greatest schools in the land!

  2. Jim mcFetridge
    September 4, 2017 at 6:35 pm

    Very well put and you are right on about theology and the Jesus we know in the Bible and to have unity we need to put aside our personal beliefs and focus on Gods word and working together to do the things the way Jesus would have us to do them. Man made rules are not part of Gods plans. We can unite together and do amazing things working together putting God first in our lives. God bless.