I have heard many of these people say Christians with differing beliefs worship another God (or another Yeshua or Jesus or …). That type of comment has always bothered me. Clearly, my Biblical beliefs are different from many people in this world. But, I don’t see that as a reason to judge that their God or Jesus is not the same as mine. And, if there is only one true God and one Messiah, that’s a serious judgment.
People see different parts of other people, depending on their relationship. And, I feel the same thing applies to our relationship with God and Jesus.
The thought struck me one day when I was talking about one of my children with someone that only saw that child in a certain situation. I was saying that she is loud, boisterous, funny, crazy, etc, and, the person I was talking to was amazed. They saw her as calm and quiet. I realized that this is very common.
Using myself as an example, different people in my life know me in very different ways. How and where I see them, how much we talk, how they see me interact with others, affects what our relationship is like and their perspective of me as a person. Examples of people that see me regularly that will have very different views of me:
- · My husband obviously knows me best. He is my confidante, my friend, my lover, my boss and the head of our home. I’ve lived with him longer than I’ve lived with anyone in my life. We talk off and on throughout the day every day. He sees me interact with people in all different situations. He knows my strengths and weaknesses. He is the head of our home.
- · My kids spend even more time with me than my husband does, because we homeschool. We are together all day every day. They see me as their mom, their boss, their teacher, etc. They see me interact with others in all aspects of everyday life.
- · My bff has known me for years and she still loves me. We communicate regularly throughout the week and spend a lot of time together.
- · I have one friend who is my confidante in a very important area of my life. That one area is what our friendship is based on. We talk about other things, but I share my innermost thoughts with her in this one area.
- · Those I fellowship with regularly hear my opinions and thoughts on Biblical issues. They see me worship. They see me act as hostess, serve others and teach children.
- · People I chat with week after week as I wait for my kids at their lessons see me interact with my kids and others in the vicinity. We discuss how the kids are doing in their activity. We talk about parenting and homeschooling.
- · People that work at the stores I frequent (and have frequented for the past 15 years) talk to me regularly. They know I’m married and have a large family. They know I homeschool. But, beyond that, most of our conversation is small talk or a summary of the week’s activities.
All of these people would see me very differently – even those I know well. My husband has a different relationship with me than my kids or my closest friends. And, the others, while they know me to varying degrees, would likely have a very different viewpoint of who I am. If one of the moms I chat with described my personality and our relationship, it would sound very different from my husband doing the same thing. If a friend I fellowship with regularly described my personality and our relationship, it would look very different from my kids or a store employee doing the same thing. You might not even know they were talking about the same person.
It’s not a matter of any of these people knowing someone who isn’t me. It’s simply a matter of them knowing different aspects of me. They don’t even all call me by the same name. I go by Missi, Miss, Gloria, Mom, Mommy, Mrs. Lara, even Mrs. Fernandez sometimes, because my grocery discount cards are all in my mother’s name. My point is, those who know God and Jesus (or Yahweh and Yeshua, or Yahuwah and Yahushuah or whatever other name folks want to use) will know different aspects of Them and Their character, based on the person’s own viewpoint and relationship. As a matter of fact, my God is big enough that we can all know a big part of Him and there’s still plenty left to learn.