Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Giving Our All to God

"LUKEWARM PEOPLE say they love Jesus, and He is, indeed, a part of their lives. But only a part. They give Him a section of their time, their money, and their thoughts, but He isn't allowed to control their lives." p. 72

Whenever I think I've finally got a grasp on this one, something inevitably happens to snap me back to reality...and, for me, reality is that I don't give as much of myself... all of myself... to Him. The irony of my life circumstances isn't lost on this one. In fact, quite the opposite. Yesterday, something happened that completely caught me off guard. (I'll save the specifics for another time.) But, I will say this: Up until today, I thought I was doing a really good job of "navigating" my life the way God would want me to. But, yesterday, God made it incredibly obvious...neon sign obvious...that I have absolutely no say in how my life will go. No matter how much I plan, and I'm an excellent planner, God's plan is bigger... and, in the end, God's plan is better.

A lot of my friends are what I refer to as "Safety-Netters"... meaning they always make sure that all risks are minimized. They have no problem taking a huge step into uncertainty... as long as there's a Plan B... and sometimes a Plan C and Plan D. But, if we truly trust God, then there isn't a need for Plan B, right? We just adjust... according to the circumstances. Now, let me make something abundantly clear: Trusting God DOESN'T mean you put up your hands and do nothing...waiting for Him to fly in like Superman and save the day. We're still called to be diligent in all we do, especially in seeking Him. But, the problem is that a lot of us only seek Him on Sunday morning, or maybe another day during the week...if we have a "church" commitment. Some of us seek Him at the same time, everyday, for a scheduled date. But, how many of us seek Him first for everything? (I know some of you do!) When we have a disagreement with someone? When we get difficult news? When our children come to us for advice? In these circumstances, do we immediately seek the counsel of God, or the counsel of man (or woman!)?
I'm ashamed to say that in some areas of my life, I only go to God AFTER I've gone to other people... because I'm pretty sure God isn't going to give me the immediate response I'm looking for. If I want advice, words of encouragement, I admit that I don't seek God first. And this brings me back, full circle, to why it can be so hard to have a "relationship" with our Creator. Every relationship in our lives is tangible. We can have conversations with our friends. We can hug our children. We can share joy and sorrow with our spouses. In all theses scenarios, there is someone physically there with us. We can see them. We know they are listening. We can see that they are moved by our sorrow or that they're ecstatic to share in our happiness. With God, we don't get to see those responses. I guess this should be the place where I tell you that He does share in those experiences... and I'm sure He does. But, because of where I am, at this exact moment, I can't. I spent an hour this morning pleading to Him, reading my Bible...anything I could think of to get some since of purpose...direction...from Him. But, most of all, I just wanted to feel loved. And, for me, this is the hardest part. I associate love with words of affection or fond embraces... so how do I come to feel God's love?
It's hard to give ourselves to something we can't see, something we can't feel... to joyfully give our money when the never-ending stack of bills is growing. In our rational minds, we think we know what's best... but I have to wonder if what we've been conditioned to consider as "best" is from God or from man... what society has taught us. I've been trying to balance both... I think it's only normal. But, God has other plans... we just have to decide if we're going to follow them.
This video might seem a little odd... or, at least, out of place. And I admit that it is. I saw this a few nights ago and it has been lingering in my head ever since. I tried to find an appropriate place to fit it in, but there really isn't one in the near future. So, I'm just throwing it out there today. It's really short... and, hopefully, it will make you think.
And as a feeble attempt to tie it into today's blog... Seeking God, just on Sunday morning, does very little when it comes to growing in our faith. And even less, when it comes to having some type of impact on the world (big or small) because of our faith.

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