Imagine a long road trip and ways to stay alert with others in the vehicle. One game I created when our kids were young was the Old and New Testament maps. I would ask where a person, place, event, or idea was located. For example: in the Old Testament, where was Noah introduced? What chapter was Abraham first called to follow God? Where are the Ten Commandments listed? What books are called wisdom literature? List the Minor Prophets.
In the New Testament, what Gospel has the Sermon on the Mount? What chapter describes the lost sheep, the lost coin, and the lost son? Where is Paul’s conversion story? Where does it say, “No temptation has seized you…?” Where are the fruit of the Spirit listed? What book and chapter describes the power of the tongue? Name the characters mentioned in Philemon.
Another game is to list the attributes of God you recognize and honor using each letter of the alphabet. This is a bit tougher than it appears. Here is an old list of mine:
A – Almighty; B – Beginning; C – Creator; D – Deliverer; E – Eternal; F – Faithful; G – Gracious; H – Holy; I – Immortal; J – Just; K – Kind; L – Loving; M – Majestic; N – Never Failing; O – Omnipotent; P – Powerful; Q – Quail Provider (it’s a bit of a stretch, I know, but true nonetheless); R – Righteous; S – Strong; T – Trustworthy; U – Unlimited; V – Victorious; W – Worthy; X – eXalted (another stretch, ouch); Y – ?; Z – Zealous?
Read Psalm 145.
“I will exalt you my God the King. I will praise your name for ever and for ever. Every day I will praise you and extol your name for ever and ever.” (Psalm 145:1-2).
Now you try this exercise and see if you can come up with words that I didn’t use. Go another step (and an even tougher one) by adding a Scripture reference to support your word (or mine). Then be deliberate and thank God for the wide variety of characteristics there are that describe Him. Worship Him for the ways He makes Himself known to you.
If you want another challenging exercise take a page from David, author of many of the Psalms of the Older Testament. This one involves a slight derivation of the first exercise. Use the letters of the alphabet again to find words that describe how God sees you.
Most of us learn about God from parents, experience, history, tradition, friends, circumstances, nature, failure, and of course, Scripture. What if you are new to your journey of faith and don’t know much about God? What if your perspective on how God sees you is also influenced and affected by some of the other reasons stated above? Let’s utilize Scripture, history, tradition, and experience to our advantage, but be dedicated to a first hand passion of looking for Him.
Many writers of Scripture state that if we look for God, we will find Him (1 Chronicles 28:9; Proverbs 8:17; and Jeremiah 29:13, to name a few). It’s not as easy as simply playing a road trip edition of the alphabet game. Make it a habit this week to stop and think of things that help you see characteristics of God. How can that help you discover ways to respond in worship?
Grow devotionally. Learn about God’s characteristics. God thoughts lead to a godly walk.
Love is a verb,
©2014 by Mike Olejarz