If you have been reading my posts over the last couple of weeks, you will know that the word God has led me to focus on this year is “Surrender”. I continue to be amazed by how much God is teaching me through this already.
If you have read my previous posts, you will also know that I have been quoting Elisabeth Elliot a lot, and once again I have discovered her words of wisdom that correspond perfectly with what God has been teaching me:
“God is God. Because he is God, He is worthy of my trust and obedience. I will find rest nowhere but in His holy will that is unspeakably beyond my largest notions of what he is up to.”
I wrote last week about disobeying God- refusing to surrender my will to his, thinking that I knew better- and the lessons God taught me through this.
Yesterday, unexpectedly, the same situation arose again. I knew this was a second chance- was I going to obey God this time?
I still didn’t want to do what he was asking me to do. There was a particular fear I had about what it would lead to if I obeyed him, it would inconvenience me to do it, and I just didn’t see why it was so important, but it was pretty clear that this time I had to obey, so I did.
And only after I had taken the step of obedience did God show me why. He showed me that he knew details about the situation of which I was completely unaware. He knew my fear, but he also knew the situation better than I did, and that there was no need to be afraid. He also knew specific details about someone else’s life that meant the act of obedience would be a particular blessing to them.
I discovered that what seemed like a small, insignificant act of obedience was actually more important than I had realised, and it blessed me to be able to bless someone else. God’s will was “unspeakably beyond my largest notions of what he was up to” but it was only by surrendering my will to his and obeying him that I got to see what he was doing.
The challenge now is to carry this lesson across to other situations:
- To obey God the first time he asks me to do something, even when I don’t want to or when I don’t understand why
- To surrender my will, my pride and my desire for control, and to accept that God knows the situation better than I do and that if he is asking me to do something there is a reason
- To trust God enough to step out into uncertainty and, in doing so, allow him to use me to be a blessing to other people
“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine. For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:9)
(On a side note, someone has let me know they are having difficulty viewing some of my posts. I’m not sure what the problem is, but I was wondering if it is affecting anyone else. If you’re viewing this in a reader or email and you have a few minutes to go to the actual site and try opening a few posts to let me know whether it works for you that would be much appreciated. Thanks!)