“Now I know partially”

Posted Jan 13, 2018

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Daily Scripture

1 Corinthians 13:9-12

9 We know in part and we prophesy in part; 10 but when the perfect comes, what is partial will be brought to an end. 11 When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, reason like a child, think like a child. But now that I have become a man, I’ve put an end to childish things. 12 Now we see a reflection in a mirror; then we will see face-to-face. Now I know partially, but then I will know completely in the same way that I have been completely known.

Reflection Questions

The apostle Paul was a forceful advocate for his faith (as seen in Acts 17:16-34). Yet he spoke to the Athenian intellectuals with respect and humility. He honored their desire to serve an “unknown god,” and quoted from their writers in support of some of the truths he wanted to share. His deep-seated faith didn’t make him arrogant, holding others in contempt. It made him humble, as he revealed in 1 Corinthians 13. He realized that his faith was about worshipping and serving the God who was bigger than everything even his exceptional mind could take in.

  • 1 Corinthians 13:9 (“we know in part”) reminded us that we don’t know everything about God. Reflect on where you were in your faith journey 1 year, 5 years, 10 years ago. What have you learned in the meantime? In what areas, as you look back, can you sense how partial your understanding of God and God’s ways was? Could it be that at this time next year, or five years from now, you’ll have the same sense as you look back on some of the things you’re sure you “know” today? Given the scale and scope of the God we worship, do you think you will ever reach a point before eternity where you have nothing left to learn (or unlearn)? How does that realization shape the way you relate to other people with different beliefs?

Prayer

Lord Jesus, thank you for the gift of a mind that can grapple with the great realities of life, learning more of your principles and your ways, and yet remaining humble in the light of all that I have left to learn. Help me grow in my understanding of you during 2018. Amen.

Family Activity

Many world religions value treating others the way we wish them to treat us. We Christians find this in Matthew 7:12, often called the Golden Rule. Read this passage, then hand out an index card to each person in your family. Have each person write, “I did or said something kind” on one side of the card. On the other side write, “I did or said something hurtful.” Ask each person to pay attention to their words and actions each day. Encourage them to place a mark on the appropriate side of the card each time they do something kind or hurtful. No one else needs to see the cards. These are just for each individual and God. Each day, work towards having fewer marks on the “hurtful” side and more marks on the “kind” side. Pray for God’s help to treat all people near and far with love, kindness, forgiveness and grace.

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GPS Guide

Whether you’re just starting to explore the Christian faith, or you’re a long-time Christian, we want to do everything we can to help you on your journey to know, love and serve God. The GPS (Grow, Pray, Study) Guide provides scripture and insights to enhance your journey.

Dave Robertson

Dave Robertson

Dave Robertson is the Director of Community Life at Resurrection West.

I've always taken great pride in my eyesight. I'm 52 years old and still don't wear glasses or contacts. In the last couple of years, if the lighting is dim and the print is too small, I do have to make it brighter in the room in order to read what, just a few years ago, I could have read easily.  

I'm certain as I continue to age, this "dim sight" will be more acute. That is part of the aging process.  

We, as Christians, are called to know, love and serve God. That is the journey. I've been a Christian my whole life. First, as a child of a pastor, raised in the church. Then, through confirmation and searching, I gave my life to Christ as a young man.    

I think back to the things I believed about God when I was a 20 year old. I was certainly fired up about God, but my Biblical knowledge was more dim as I knew many of the stories, but had yet to make these stories a Biblical faith. I believed in God and sought God, but our relationship was new and mysterious.

I hadn't discerned my calling from God. I didn't know how to recognize God speaking to my mind. I didn't know many things. There was a fire burning, but much growth and sanctification was yet to come.  

As I said earlier, I'm now 52. I look back to when I was 20, 30, 40 and even 50. My journey has been a blessing. God is still mysterious and I have so much still to learn, but I can see where God has led me and what God has done in my life. I can see how dim the mirror was when I was 20.    

I have a friend, L. T. Walls, who is 92, forty years older than me. I believe L. T. sees pretty clearly. e's what I want to be when I grow up. L. T. and Jesus are personal friends and at 92, he's learned so much more than me, experienced so much more and loves so much more than me. He knows, loves and in many ways, serves God so much more than me even though he can't get around as much as he used to.

Jesus calls us to be the Light of the World. That happens through God's sanctifying love shining through us. My prayer is that God shines in me. My part is to continue growing, continue loving, continue serving and continue surrendering my life so that as Paul states, "I have been crucified with Christ, and it's no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me." (Galatians 2:20).

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