On Friday’s blog I wrote that God’s been convicting me of my need to ask His direction first before pursuing opportunities albeit good and necessary and honoring to Him. Today’s blog is a continuation of that topic based on the Scriptures I read this morning. Lots for me to ponder as God pinpoints this area in my life.
I’ve been able to recite Proverbs 3:5,6 for years—“Trust in the LORD with all your heart. Do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will direct your paths.”
Whenever I’ve faced difficult situations, especially those I’d call “life detours,” I’d fall back on verse five and its command to trust God’s wisdom rather than depend on my limited understanding. I’ve always found immense reassurance and comfort in these words. Trying to figure things out on my own never works well, anyway, so why fight it?
Verse six is a different matter: “Seek his will in all you do, and he will direct your paths.” As I look back over the last ten or fifteen years, I can pinpoint numerous instances where I’ve assumed commitments—albeit worthwhile and honorable—but not been able to follow through. This realization has been humbling and painful to admit, but it’s been eye-opening for me. For that I am grateful.
Why haven’t I been able to follow through? Because an opportunity presented itself and I jumped at it before seeking God’s will in the matter. I ended up trying to fulfill my commitment in my own strength, and my strength failed. If I’d been operating in the power of the Holy Spirit, the outcome would have been much different.
As a life coach, I’ve learned to ask the “why” question to get to the bottom of the matter. So, why would I say yes before stopping to ask God for His direction? Here are four possible reasons:
- Because I’m afraid I’ll miss this opportunity. If I don’t say yes, it may never come again. What does this reveal about my belief in God’s sovereignty in my life?
- Because I’m flattered by the opportunity. What does this say about my motive? It’s all about pride.
- Because I’ve fallen into wrong thinking about busyness. I need to readjust my thinking to understand that a full calendar neither affirms my identity nor makes me somehow more spiritual than others whose calendar is less cramped.
- Because I don’t know how to say no. What does this indicate? I fear appearing inadequate. I also fear disappointing others who expect something from me. So—rather than risk looking “lesser than,” I say yes only to regret it later.
Wherever I’ve taught in recent months, I refer to feeling like a human onion. God has been exposing and peeling layer after layer to show me a better way—His way. Seems that He’s in the business of peeling again. This time, it’s all about removing pride and insecurity and self-sufficiency. He’s teaching me humility as I admit my need for His wisdom and direction for every aspect of my life, and He’s teaching me patience to wait as I listen for His voice.
How about you? Have you said yes impulsively to albeit good opportunities without asking God for His direction first only to fail to follow through? Or am I the only one who’s done this?
#bbg2 #ChristianDevotions #WaitOnGod #PrayForGuidance