Putting God in a Box

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One of my favorite things about the 2:1 Conference was the evidence of God’s hand in it all. While it was a wonderful to get together and hang out, in person, with some of my favorite online friends, it was also a chance to hear from God as He spoke through the conference speakers.

I think a lot of times we know it’s God speaking to us when it’s something we don’t want to hear – when we want to ignore or brush aside what we’re hearing, but just can’t.


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Sometimes, He bangs us over the head with what He’s trying to say, like when he showed me how I’ve been tearing Megan down, rather than building her up, as I should be. Other times, it’s just a gentle nudge that you can’t quite brush aside.

The first time I felt God speaking to me at the conference was that second kind – the gentle nudge.

Just so you know, I’m not someone who just goes around claiming that God was speaking to me about this or that. I usually find those moments very hard to decipher, but these two things that He showed me at the 2:1 Conference, I firmly believe were from Him.

Have you heard the story yet of how Rachel Martin came to speak at the conference? It was a total God thing. She was supposed to be there as the emcee, but the Saturday morning keynote speaker was unable to attend at the last minute. After much prayer, Rachel agreed to fill in.

I made several notes during her keynote address, the first of which was, “God was not surprised that Rachel would be speaking.”

I wrote down other great words of wisdom from Rachel, such as:

Comparison is the death of contentment.

We need to reclaim the Internet for God.

God doesn’t care about comments, Facebook likes, or retweets. He cares that He comes first and that I care for my family.

All good stuff, but there was one thing that I didn’t write down – not at first, anyway.

I didn’t want to write it down because what if someone read it over my shoulder? What if someone saw what God had just revealed to me? What if someone else saw this nasty truth?

I couldn’t let it go, though. God kept whispering it in my ear. So, I finally wrote it down:

“I compartmentalize God.”



As Rachel was talking, I was constantly reminded that my faith should permeate everything I do – from parenting to blogging, my role as spouse, friend, and even stranger-in-passing. My faith should be evident in everything that I do.

I started thinking about the word permeate. It was one of the kid’s vocabulary words recently. The example given in their text was how smoke permeates a room.

I thought about that. Have you ever sat around a campfire or been in a room with someone who smokes?

The smell of smoke gets in everything – your clothes, your hair, even on your skin. You can smell it long after you’ve gotten away from the source. So can others with whom you come into contact.

Shouldn’t God be like that in my life? A part of everything I do? He should permeate every fiber of my being, every aspect of my day.

Everyone with whom I come into contact – whether online or in person, stranger, family or friend – should be able to sense God’s presence in me. He should so permeate my life that even though I am not the source, others would see Him in my words and actions.

I can’t put God into a box and pull Him out when I need Him. He’s too big to be contained. The aroma of His spirit should permeate every aspect of my life.

Its time to quit compartmentalizing God and let Him permeate my soul.

The verse I used at the close of the Have a HEART for Your Child post seems to work well here, too:

“Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.” Acts 3:19

Are you trying to put God in a box?

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Kris Bales is a newly-retired homeschool mom and the quirky, Christ-following, painfully honest founder (and former owner) of Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers. She has a pretty serious addiction to sweet tea and Words with Friends. Kris and her husband of over 30 years are parents to three amazing homeschool grads. They share their home with three dogs, two cats, a ball python, a bearded dragon, and seven birds.

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  1. Hide Him under a bushel? NO! I'm gonna let Him shine! 🙂

    Press On My Internet Friend. 🙂

  2. This is something that I am so guilty of doing! Particularly during stressful times, or around people who are behaving in an unkind way, I find myself forgetting to just calm down and think "what is God saying by showing me this?". Thank you for the reminder.

  3. First you step on my toes with your post on having a Heart for your Children got a lot from that. I wrote down your HEART and the comments you had beside them in my journal. Then I read this post you really received a blessing from the conference. Thanks for sharing that blessing with me through these post. Have a blessed day.

  4. Omigosh, I LOVE your analogy to smoke in a room.  That is awesome!  I love the way I can totally FEEL God's presence after spending time with someone who loves Him so much.  Great post.  Got me thinking.

  5.  "…my faith should permeate everything I do.." That's the crux of it, yes? Thanks for another lovely, painful post.

  6. This is a beautiful post, Kris.  It's very timely for me as I have been feeling the same urgings.  

  7. Great post! Thanks for sharing your thoughts.  I love the comparison of how smoke permeates everything!

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