Week 3 Obey and Partake
The Lord shall prevent the evil thou fearest, and sanctify, remove, or lighten the evil thou feelest. He will preserve the soul, that it be not defiled by sin, and disturbed by affliction; he will preserve it from perishing eternally. He will keep thee in life and death; going out to thy labor in the morning of thy days, and coming home to thy rest when the evening of old age calls thee in. It is a protection for life.[i]
ometimes we fear the Lord will call us to serve in places where we very much do not want to go, or that He may call us to do work we feel unequipped to handle. We must remember God doesn't need us to be strong; He only needs us willing to be used by Him; He calls us where we are, just as we are. Remember Gideon's words, "My clan is the weakest...and I am the least in my family..."[ii] And yet through Gideon the Lord defeated a terrifying foe.
We cling tightly to our own ideas of what the future should be, and the release of our ways for the Lord’s can be difficult if we focus more upon what we’ve given up for Christ rather than upon what He gave up for us. It is focus upon the Lord that fuels obedience.
There may be a grieving process to traverse as we exchange our own hopes and dreams for the Lord’s. We can’t fully see His purposes, and so the release of our agenda for His must take place through faith in His power to protect and provide. In order to move forward, we must take a good look at what we are placing on the altar. If we count the cost, there will be less room for the confusion of conflicting loyalties later. When the devil waves one of our old delusions of grandeur in front of our faces we can say "Oh, I put that on the altar. It isn't mine anymore; it is the Lord's. You'll have to talk to Him about that."
Our Lord means us good and not harm, and great blessing is in store for those who set their hearts on obedience.
Pray: Lord, I release my will to You. I release to You these things I do not want to do, labors I do not want to perform, journeys I do not want to take. I give You permission to work in my heart and mind to transform my will to match Yours. Your will, not mine be done. I entrust myself, my loved ones, my past, my present moment, and my future into Your hands. Amen.
What joy for those whose strength comes from the Lord, who have set their minds on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. When they walk through the Valley of Weeping, it will become a place of refreshing springs. The autumn rains will clothe it with blessings. They will continue to grow stronger, and each of them will appear before God in Jerusalem.
Psalm 84:5-7 NLT