This:

is the ghost of Christmas yet to come.  He’s a menacing sort of fellow, in fact Dickens says that “Scrooge bent down upon his knee; for in the very air through which this Spirit moved it seemed to scatter gloom and mystery.”  Not really someone you want to spend a lot of time with.  I realized a couple of months ago that subconsciously I tend to view God this way.  As though he is a silent intimidating figure following me around, pointing me towards my doom as I stand there waiting for the other shoe to drop, and that in this case, I should clearly spend my life cowering like Scrooge is doing in the picture above.  The bible clearly says otherwise however; in verses like

Psalm 34:8 – Taste and see that the LORD is good;
blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.

Proverbs 10:22 – The blessing of the LORD brings wealth,
without painful toil for it.

Romans 5:8 – But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners Christ died for us.

This is a God who gave his life to save us from death, rather than condemn us to it.  The more I thought about it the more I realized that God is really more like this guy:

This is the Ghost of Christmas Present.  He is warm and welcoming, and when Scrooge first enters the room he calls out “Come in! and know me better, man!”  And when I think of God like this, knowing him better is exactly what I want to do.

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