It’s (Not At) All About Us
by Brett Barry
Colosians 1:16 For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him.
As I was studying in Colossians the other morning, I heard in my spirit echoes of two very opposing statements regarding God’s plan of salvation:
It’s all about us.
It's not at all about us.
Is God’s plan of salvation all about humanity? Or is it about Him? I’ve heard various arguments over the years as people passionately defended their perspective. It’s all about God! All things were made by Him and for Him… It’s all about us, For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son…
So, which is it? Does it really matter?
Here’s a thought for consideration: I believe the answer to the above quandary is absolutely and unequivocally, “Yes.”
Yes, it is all about us.
Yes, it is all about God.
And, I believe that understanding how it works does matter if we are to avoid deception and grow to maturity.
As the Creator of all, from God’s perspective the purpose of salvation is at the same time fully about Himself, and fully about us. We were created to be with Him; one in spirit, thought and action, and unhindered in His presence. Saving us fulfills His intent for creating us, and He is glorified as we are saved.
However, because of sin’s presence in our lives, we cannot attempt both perspectives and remain pure. When we, to any degree, begin to make the focus of salvation about us we immediately step out of synch with God, because our intent has shifted from honoring the cause for which we were created, to give Him honor and glory, to the effect of His salvation; that which we receive. While we can and should rejoice in it, for it's dynamic and interactive, salvation is actually the result of loving God. Though we are instructed to work out our salvation, the fruit of working it out is that we learn to love God with all we are.
So, from our perspective, this whole saving process of coming to know and love Him must be about Him. Our focus must remain on what pleases Him, not on what we receive as we please Him.
We see this in the lives of Mary, Elizabeth, Jesus and others.
Gabriel appears to Zechariah (Luke 1), and tells him of the events that will take place - stating that, while John would be a joy to he and Elizabeth, God’s purpose was to “make ready a people prepared for the Lord.” God’s plan wasn’t about them, but they, being involved, received the blessing of their submission to it.
In the same way, Gabriel came to Mary and told her God’s plan of the Christ and His eternal kingdom over Jacob’s descendants. Again, it wasn’t about her or Joseph, but about God’s intent being established. Mary’s response? I am the Lord’s servant. May your word to me be fulfilled.” Their blessing came through yielding fully to God’s intent.
And Jesus, even though sinless, still made his purpose only about knowing, loving and pleasing the Father. “I only do what I see the Father doing…I only say what I hear the Father saying.” The results? God's full measure was released in and through Him.
When God has the intent of our hearts and the focus of our desire, we please and honor Him with every aspect of our being. The result is that we receive the fullness of His intent for saving us in the first place: oneness with Him.
From God’s perspective, salvation is all about us and all about Himself.
From our perspective, it’s all about Him.
Therefore, rejoice! For it’s (not at) all about us!