That moment when you stop and sense….. perhaps the question I am asking is the wrong question.
Maybe its only me, but its what happened to me this week. I was stopped in my thoughts and gave pause. “God what question should I be asking? What question do you want me to ask? ”
I was reminded through the sermon I heard over the weekend, sometimes we have to wrestle with what we are anxious about before God brings us clarity. It is not easy nor is it enjoyable, but God has a purpose for it. At times I find myself frustrated because I want God to give me an answer right now. I think my question is important; it has value, merit. I have learned that God tends to let me wrestle before I see clearly.
The advent verse was 1 Kings 18:21 “Elijah went before the people and said, “How long will you waver between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him.” (NIV)
Before I even turned the page to read the devotional – this verse jumped out at me. Now the verse is out the story of Elijah and the prophets of Baal, a sacrifice and a challenge to see who was God. Was it the Lord God, the Hebrew God or the Baal. God showed up and clearly showed He was the one true God. Wrapped up in this verse though is the question God is asking of me. I am allowing what I thought was the question I was wrestling with to distract me from the bigger question. The question on where to serve, what is next, where is next – isn’t really the question – the question is do I believe that The LORD is God? If He is , and I do believe that He is – then I need to follow Him. That means me letting go of control. Letting go of preconceived ideas of what following Him looks like. I am trying to figure out what the future holds; what comes next; where is next. There is a balance of vision and goals AND trying to tell God what you want to see happen and then looking for God’s confirmation of that.
What gets in my way of following God?
I get in my way of following God.
My idea of what it all should look like.
“And you let everything go. And kneel. Kneel here and behold only Him – the only place where you can receive the gift of acceptance, so the gods of acceptance have no hold on you.” Pg 150 The Greatest Gift
How do I rid myself of frustration? Get myself to the place where I don’t have battling questions, battling opinions? Worship. Pause and stop at the throne of God.
My job is not to answer all my questions. I have one question that God is asking of me to answer. Will I follow Him. Will I choose to trust. Will I live out following Him.
I have chosen to follow Jesus. Chosen to follow Him with all of me. This is a deeper call to follow than ever before. I feel kind of like Peter when Jesus asked him do you love me three times. I know He hears my prayers; hears my frustrations; hears my questions. He cares. More than I can begin to fathom. But will I choose to follow Him each and every moment. Will I choose to follow Him in the big things. Follow Him in the little things. Follow Him moment to moment. Each conversation. Each decision?
I asked Jesus a question…..and He asked one back – do I trust Him to make the right decision? Hmmm…..stopped me in my tracks. Crux of the matter isn’t it….I was struggling to be okay with His answer, I was fearful. Following and trusting Jesus means letting go of the fear and turning away from it. The answer is yes, I do trust Him and I will follow Him.
I need to worship. Intentionally pause and be in the presence of God.
Pause from life.
Pause at the throne.
At the feet of Jesus.
An amazing thing happens when I pause and I worship. When I am still. Quiet. Order from the chaos.
Emotions find their proper spot.
Repentance over the arrogance of trying to force an answer, rather than humbly submitting.
Jesus asks me. Asks you.
“Will. You. Trust. Me.
I. Love. You.
I. Am. For. You.
I created the universe. I made Mary pregnant. I became a baby. Grew up. Endured suffering. Shame. The cross. Conquered death. For you. For all who believe. I can handle this. Same amount of love. Same amount of power. Trust. Me.”
In His presence.
~ a personal response this Advent Season
Ann Voskamp over at A Holy Experience printables & much more, including the book
Scripture quotations taken from the The Holy Bible, New International Version Copyright 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc. All rights reserved worldwide.