Thursday, February 04, 2010

On Letting Go...

Letting go would sound like something fairly trivial. Letting something out of your hands is as simple as just relinquishing your grip on it, right? I mean, seriously, all you have to do is just give it up, and leave it for someone else to take care of. Not only do you not have responsibility of it anymore, but if it crashes and burns, you aren’t responsible. Sounds great to me.
Or does it? Try giving up control of a vehicle sometime in adverse conditions, when you feel that you have superior technique and training. Impossible. Now try that same relinquishment when you know the other person has been driving in those conditions for years. Easy. What is the difference? Simply put, it’s faith and trust.

In other words, what I am digging at is the fact that when I don’t give the control of my life to God, I am in essence saying to Him that I have a better understanding of what’s really going on in life. I have more control, and He just doesn’t understand me the way that He should. I am slapping his omniscience, His omnipotence; the very core being of who He is. It's the reason that faithlessness is such a grave sin. It's undermining the very character of God.

The writer of Hebrews puts it very plainly: “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence [or, conviction] of things that are not seen.” It is the very essence of what is not. Paul writes in 2 Corinithians 4:18 “So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.” We are also told that "without faith, it is impossible to please God" (Heb 11:6)

What does that mean for us? I think it means a complete paradigm shift from the traditional. Perhaps it's time to step out on the fragile limb of iconoclasm, and risk a fall or two. Is the idea just to be different? No. If you are simply looking to be different, then become part of the '60's counterculture. It's still alive and well, trust me. This is not just being different for the sake of standing out, or being noticed. It is shifting our thoughts and minds from ourselves to the things of God, and when that happens we WILL stand out. I have heard that 90% of Christians say no to God. In everything? No. Just in the everyday things of life. The things that God asks us to stand alone in. And then when the big things come along, God has no choice but to pass us by since we were not willing to do the little things for Him.

Last week at Bible School, I heard a thought-provoking quote: "When opportunity comes, it is too late to prepare." In other words, if we wait until God wants to use us in the "big" things of life to say yes to Him, we will never be asked. Imagine with me if a girl decided that she was going to just wait until a guy asked for her hand in marriage before she would make an effort to learn how to cook, clean, sew, and just be a general housewife. Suppose she just decided that she would rather not "waste" her formative years with such drudgery. Foolishness, right? What self-respecting young man is going to marry a girl who was too lazy to prepare how to be a wife when she was growing up? What does that tell us about her character?

God looks at us in the same way. No, it's not our self-effort that makes Him love us more or less. Our actions never change his love for us, but we CAN change how he uses our lives. If a young recruit puts everything he has into his military training, more than likely he is going to succeed in going up the ranks in the future. His superiors are going to notice his tenacity, his courage, and his valor; promoting him when the opportunity arises. The place where God differs is in WHO He promotes. While the general of the US military is going to notice the cocky, self-assured person, God notices the humble man. The man or woman who always puts others first. The man that is talked about in Isaiah 57:15 “For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.

So I digress, but all that to say that God is calling us as young Christians to give things up. To live lives that are not easy in this "easy-believism" society. We need to reject the status-quo, and press on for deeper things. Say yes to God. It WILL be hard, but in the end, it will be infinitely worth every tear a million times over.

“He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me. He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it. He that receiveth you receiveth me, and he that receiveth me receiveth him that sent me.” Matthew 10:37-40

May God bless you as you let go of your life, and let God lead!