Sometimes it takes faith just to believe that God is speaking to you, doesn’t it? I wrote this post last Thursday and didn’t publish it because I struggled with whether it was truth or not. We went to church on Sunday, and the sermon was on the exact same thing! I’m not talking about a loose interpretation, but the SAME message.
This was such a confirmation to my heart. It was just a reminder that if the Lord is speaking something to you, chances are He is speaking the same thing to someone else.
This week I have been working through Beth Moore’s study The Inheritance. She said something that knocked me right between the eyes.
“If we are bored, we are out of the will of God.” – Beth Moore
I had to laugh because I recently told my husband that I was bored! I’m not talking about the type of boredom that a pre-teen tweets about. Believe me, I stay busy. I’m referring to the type of boredom that emerges from a lack of purpose.
Leo Tolstoy describes boredom as a desire for desires. Isn’t it, though? Don’t we all want to be supremely passionate about something?
I thought about that remark for a long time before I came to the conclusion that my boredom was a result of not stepping into the promises (or calling) of God.
Do you remember the story about the Israelites before they entered into their Promised Land? The first generation never received their inheritance because they were disobedient and afraid.
They took one look at the fortified city of Jericho and said, ‘Thanks but no thanks….we’ll just park right here. It’s better to wander in the desert for forty years than to die at the hand of giants!’
It wasn’t until Joshua took over the leadership that the Israelites decided to trust the Lord and cross the Jordan into the Promised Land (Joshua 3).
The Lord told Joshua to have the priests stand in the middle of the Jordan River (at flood stage, mind you) with the Ark. Can’t you just hear them asking, “You want us to do what? Are you sure God told you that?”
I can just picture their astonishment as the river parted as soon as their feet touched the water (Joshua 3:15). Knowing myself, I probably would have told Joshua to take a hike and started building a boat!
I don’t know where Christians got the idea that self-sufficiency is the same thing as spiritual maturity. I can’t tell you how many times I have heard the phrase, ‘when I get my life back on track, then I’ll _____”
Spiritual maturity is not characterized by self-sufficiency but rather God-dependency.
Somehow we have convinced ourselves that the Lord’s calling on our lives is supposed to be easy. It’s not! It’s going to be more difficult and complex. If you are looking at the calling on your life and thinking to yourself, “I can’t do this.” You are absolutely right!
You cannot get through it alone. God’s calling is exactly that…God’s. It requires Him, and if it requires Him, then it requires us to be dependent on Him.
The more powerful the ministry…the deeper the waters. The Lord is beckoning us to conquer Jericho, but first we need to step into the river to get there.
The Israelites were camping out at the edge of their inheritance because they were afraid of what it would require to claim it. What they didn’t realize was that an inheritance isn’t an inheritance until it is possessed.
We, like the Israelites, settle for boring manna when the Lord has planned a feast in the Promised Land!
I don’t know about you, but I struggle with stepping into my calling because I am afraid of what it will cost to claim it. Am I the only one out there that is scared to really love their husband or kids because they are afraid that God will take them if I do? This goes back to what we were talking about before in the misconception that God is a taker rather than a giver. He’s a giver! He Loves us and has good things for us!
I have also told myself that if I step into my inheritance I will be bored. The world would have us believe that holiness is synonymous with boredom. Was Christ boring?
While the disciples followed Jesus, He walked on water, raised the dead, turned water into wine, healed the sick, fed the five thousand, transfigured on a mountain, took a coin out of a fish’s mouth, cast out demons, and conquered death, hell and the devil.
I’d say those disciples had a pretty wild ride! Holiness is anything but boring.
The third reason I believe we as Christians do not possess the ministry that God has called us to is that we are afraid of looking foolish. We think to ourselves that the Israelites had it easier. They had the Ark of the Covenant, Moses, and miracles.
As I was thinking this, I came across this passage in Exodus.
"Moses answered, “What if they do not believe me or listen to me and say, ‘The Lord did not appear to you’?
Then, the LORD said to him, 'What is in your hand?'
'A staff,' he replied.
The LORD said, 'Throw it on the ground.' Moses threw it on the ground and it became a snake, and he ran from it." (Exodus 4:4)
Not much has changed, has it? We are still worried about what people will think of us 6,000 years later. Just this week I was fretting about what people would think about my stupid blog post! We think that it would be easier if we have some physical representation of God’s power.
Then, we could chant like children, “See, I told you so.” I realized this week that the Israelites didn’t have it easier because of the miracles. They had the same struggles with faith that we do, and we cannot follow the Lord without faith.
The difference is, we have the Holy Spirit and that is infinitely better than any shadow of God those miracles could offer.
We may look foolish to the world when we declare what God has told us, called us to, or commanded us to do. You can imagine the Israelite's felt a little foolish carrying that big Ark into the river.
I’d rather be a fool for God than a fool who misses out on God’s presence and purpose because they are too worried about what people would think.
I love what Joshua tells the Israelite's the night before the parting of the Jordan.
“Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do amazing things among you.’” Joshua 3:5
God’s calling on our life may look difficult, complex, and scary, but do not fear…the waters part.
This is getting kind of long so I’m continuing on Friday the 10th