God or the Man Upstairs? Losing Sight of Holiness

man upstairs, Adobe Spark

man upstairs, Adobe SparkSend this letter to twelve people to receive a blessing from the man upstairs.

Recently, I’ve seen social media posts and received chain letters. Each written from the premise of a promise. If I believe in karma, then something good will happen today to make me happy. An angel will come to watch over me. The man upstairs will bless me.

But, to seal the deal, I must forward the message to a specified number of friends including the sender. And posting as my status on social media, even better.

Still further, for the declaration to come true, I should act fast—within minutes. And this, Thou shalt not break the chain. 

To set the record straight, I don’t believe these promises hold any power or hope. So here’s why.

Chain Letters Versus God’s Letter

Merriam-Webster explains karma, “The force created by a person’s actions that some people believe causes good or bad things to happen to that person.”

I enjoyed Star Wars theme, “the force be with you.” But the force is fictional. Herein lies the deception of karma. It’s purely philosophical and not founded on fact.

I don’t believe in good and bad karma. But I do believe in a Holy God.

God’s letter, His Word, gives us a different perspective. As one of His own, angels watch over me (Psalm 91:11) and I’m blessed with every spiritual blessing in heavenly places (Ephesians 1:3).

I do believe my actions bring consequences. I choose my words, deeds, thoughts, and behavior. Each of man upstairs, Adobe Sparkthese areas have a ripple effect on me and others.

If I don’t take care of my body, my health suffers. When my performance at work lacks effort, I may lose my job. Mean words from my mouth, crush the spirit of my spouse or child.

On the flip side, healthy eating and exercise strengthens my heart and tones my muscles. When I labor in my job with the highest caliber, the rewards may be a promotion or bonus. Words of kindness build others up.

The spiritual principle holds true. “Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap” Galatians 6:7 ESV.

Yet God’s letter promises that He does break chains. He breaks away our chains of sin, bondage, and strongholds.

[bctt tweet=”Nothing supernatural happens if we break chain letters, only when God breaks away our chains.” username=”inspireafire”]

The Man Upstairs Versus God

“What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.” (A. W. Tozer, The Knowledge of the Holy.)

When I think about God, I don’t picture Him as the man upstairs. Social media posts referring to “the main upstairs” and chain letters addressing “Dear man upstairs” cheapen the indescribable God. man upstairs, Adobe Spark

This. Is. Empty. Rhetoric.

I do believe that Jesus, God incarnate, came in the flesh as both man and God. Christ rose from the dead—not by a mystical force, but by supernatural power. He defeated the grave and spiritual death.

The Lord Jesus Christ became victor over the powers of darkness with His illuminating light. He ascended to heaven where He’s seated at the right hand of God. God reigns supreme over the realm of both heaven and earth.


Q: Have you not known? Have you not heard?

A: The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable. (Isaiah 40:28, ESV)

When we refer to God as the man upstairs, our perspective on holiness becomes muddied.

[bctt tweet=”God’s holiness cannot be mistaken, lowered, or misdirected. #holiness” username=”inspireafire”]

I believe He’s God. Mighty. Powerful. Majestic. Holy. Sovereign. Eternal. Infinite. Wise. Faithful.

I don’t believe in the man upstairs. I believe in God the Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit.

Images courtesy of Adobe Spark.


Karen Friday

Whether the spoken or written word, Karen thrives in moving an audience to experience laughter, tears, surprise, and deep reflection. She not only possesses an affection for words (just ask her family), but she also cherishes God’s Word. Karen is an award-winning writer who has published both devotions and articles with a mission to know Jesus more and make Him known. She contributes to several national sites while she works on her first non-fiction book. In the blogging world, she is referred to as “Girl Friday” where she shares a central message: you are never far from hope. And she considers her life as a pastor’s wife and women’s ministry leader a sacred calling. Karen and her husband Mike reside in East Tennessee and have two grown children and two grandchildren. The entire family is fond of the expression, “TGIF: Thank God it’s Friday.” They owe Monday an apology. Connect with her blog community, Hope is Among Us.

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