This journey of walking with God is not always smooth. We experience a lot of hurdles and bumps in the road.
There are times of confusion and disappointment. There are times of frustration and upset.
These are really normal. They are part of our experience as human beings.
Sometimes, especially when we are young in the Lord, we expect God to make everything great.
We think that if we walk with God then everything will go how we want it to go.
But this is rarely the case. Using God in this way simply reveals us as children and God as something we would like to use.
God does not fix everything for us. And the path he has us walk is not always smooth. It is how we learn after all and how we come to rely on him.
“Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for you are close beside me. Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me.” Psalm 23:4
As we walk with God there are a few things we can do to come to greater understanding of God’s leading and guiding of us.
1. One is to have a bigger perspective than normal. With God we are able to step back from our own experience and lives and look at things from God’s angle.
“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts”, says the Lord, “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.” Isaiah 55:8
How does he see this situation? How might God be leading me through this difficulty? What might I learn from this?
“Joyful are those you discipline, Lord, those you teach with your instructions.” Psalm 94:12
There is not one wasted experience or situation in the Kingdom of God.
Everything is for our benefit and for our development. God is continually growing us and shaping us so that we can reflect Him more accurately and come to understand how much we are loved.
2. The second thing is to allow options in our thinking. We need bigger thinking. Life is not all one way or another. Often the Lord leads us in one way of thinking simply to get us to another spot.
God meets us where we are at and leads us from there. He knows that we cannot make leaps in growth or understanding.
“Have you never heard? Have you never understood? The Lord is the everlasting God, the creator of all the earth. He never grows weak or weary. No one can measure the depths of his understanding” Isaiah 40:28
And so while we may think that ‘A’ is the answer, he knows that ‘F’ is really the solution. He takes us on journey’s of thought and practice to get us from ‘A’ (our thinking) to ‘F’ (his best solution).
This can be a disheartening journey. Often we don’t really understand where he is taking us. But that is okay.
“Instruct the wise, and they will be even wiser. Teach the righteous and they will learn even more.” Proverbs 9:9
While his leading is not a guarantee of our best wishes, he knows better than us what we need and is intent on getting us there.
God has our best interest at heart.
“For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord, “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11
3. In this process he tests us again and again by having us lay down our desires. Just like Abraham laying down his son’s life on the altar, we are tested the same.
Though we have good desires and pray for outcomes that will bring glory to God he sets up situations where time after time our motives are tested.
“Put me on trial, Lord, and cross-examine me. Test my motives and my heart.” Psalm 26:2
Do we really want prayers answered for Him or for us? Are we looking to the best interest of others, or of ourselves?
God brings hurdles and roadblocks to our lives to test us this way. For he knows that with the wrong motives everything will come to an end.
“Remember how the Lord your God led you through the wilderness these forty years, humbling you and testing you to prove your character, to find out whether or not you would obey his commands.” Deuteronomy 8:2
Our reasons for praying for this or for going after that must be refined and proven solid. Only then is He glorified and do our lives have real satisfaction.
Through all of these things, 1) Learning to have bigger perspective, 2) Bigger thinking, and 3) Testing of our Motives, we mature and grow up.
Rather than little children who demand this or that, who cry out ‘But you said!’ we enter into a true partnership with the Lord.
“God will do this, for he is faithful to do what he says, and he has invited you into partnership with his son, Jesus Christ our Lord.” 1 Corinthians 1:9
We are wiser, we think differently, we pray differently, and we act differently.
God is in the people development business. God is intent on growing us up into spiritual adults.
We welcome your growth in us Lord. Thank-You.