I was reading scripture the other day and one of the words that I studied a little more was “like”. We hear people talking and say “like” all the time in various ways as a part of conversations. We say “It was like…” or “So I said like…” So, I thought it was a good conversation for us to think about here on Journeys of the Heart.
When I was reading the scripture, we have a good example of it found with the prophet Ezekiel where he saw heaven open up and tried to describe it. Because there were no words to describe it in all its glory and splendor, he had to resort to something humans could understand. So he used “it is like” and then used an example we could identify with in order to give some idea of what it was like. It was something that was beyond our understanding so he used descriptive words that would help us better understand what it looked like.
To me, who loves photography, it is like being in that moment where you see with your mind’s eye something so great that you want to take a photo of it, only to get home and look at it and the photo doesn’t do justice to what your eyes saw. The dimensions in the photo are lost in what you thought you saw with your vision and what was on the camera now as you view it. There are times I even saw it and couldn’t get the camera ready in enough time to capture it. I used to get so upset when I missed it. But I have learned to just say, that was just a “between God and I” moment. Or maybe you have had something totally miraculous happen, and you try to describe your experience to a friend, but you can hardly find the words to express what happened. They weren’t there and present with you. They can’t identify with you, so… we resort to explaining it the best way we can. We end up trying to use our imagination (“It was like”…) to convey our experience.
You know we hear talk about being made in the image of God. It’s true. What we need to remember thought is that we don’t know what God or His Son Jesus looks like really. We imagine something like the pictures we see in Christian Bookstores, and pictures from a story book growing up. But think about this…we don’t know. Words are used in scripture writers to help us understand in a way we can grasp, just like Ezekiel did. What a day that will be when we see Him face to face, and understand more than ever before, who God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit are! We will fully understand what Heavenly splendor is with our own eyes and experience.
So as you have conversations and use the word “like”, think about what that really means, remembering that in scriptures that word is to help the writer to be understood. The Holy Spirit uses “this is like”, to be understood. Begin to listen to yourself with the use of “like” and how you use it. As you read the Word, just remember the writers are using descriptions so you can better understand the thoughts or idea. Don’t just run over them with your eyes, try to pick out those descriptions and read over them again to better understand what is being shared with your heart, right there in the moment. What is God or a Biblical Writer trying to teach you about that subject?
It’s fun to read the Word and catch something as significant as this thought. I hope it helps you to think of the use of the word and its way of drawing you into the text to further understand it. Isn’t it great that they wrote scripture so that we could better understand the meaning, and thus give us a better understanding of His love? Right from God down to the pages of your Bible.
I hope this post leads you on an adventure in your Bible to search out some of these descriptions we have been given through the Word. Let me know what you find!
Until next time…