I have heard it said somewhere that if we look at our prayers we learn a lot about our view of God. Many times the last thing we want to do is to look at how weak we are in certain areas. We focus on strengths and refuse to expose our deepest vulnerabilities.
The life we were meant to live is in His kingdom. A real life without celebrity, worldly wealth or glamor. A life which starts by our realization of how badly we need a savior, Jesus. Our only reasonable response to this realization is complete surrender and awe to Jesus. A cornerstone in the foundation of a kingdom life is one's ability to learn to live by faith. If you examen the most influential people of the Bible, you will quickly notice they have one thing in common. Theses individuals learned to live by faith.
Take David, not King David, but David before becoming king over Israel. David remembered God's faithfulness in past events and went out to fight Goliath. He was appalled by this man's lack of respect for God. He didn't see this 9 foot giant as the rest of the Israelites did. David saw just one more of these little battles he had been fighting all his life.
The Lord who delivered me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.” Saul said to David, “Go, and the Lord be with you.” (1 Samuel 17:37 NIV84)
David realized he had the power of God behind him and that God fights differently than man. God had prepared David through each small battle while watching over sheep. Each seemingly small fight to protect sheep was a faith builder. People only saw a shepherd boy, but God saw a mighty warrior.
David said to the Philistine, “You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the Lord Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. (1 Samuel 17:45 NIV84)
Our actions or inactions cannot make us holy. There is only one who makes us holy and this battle has been won. Jesus makes us holy, we just have to be willing to accept His gift. Our next reasonable response is to wholly surrender to Him. Our lives are not our own.
Being made holy is not about our actions, but the condition of our heart. God is refining us through each small or seemingly large battle. After each battle we come out of the fire a little closer to God. We learn to leave the things of this world behind and pickup our cross.
If you have ever attended a leadership training or a team building event, you have most likely experienced an exercise I like to call Flying Blind. The exercise typically involves pairing up with another person you do not know well. Next one person is assigned to be the eyes for each pair. The other person is blindfolded and is told to allow the verbal instructions from their partner to direct their steps. There are times in following Christ where one might feel like the blindfolded person in the training exercise. I can tell you from experience that your ability to hone in on the Father’s voice is the key to successfully following God. We must intentionally guard against all forms of distraction, mental fog, or disruption in our line of communication with God.
This is a point in our walk where we are extremely vulnerable. We must be extremely diligent in pursuing the things of God. Sometimes we make the mistake of reading too much into what God is showing us. If we do not take intentional steps to remain impartial, there is the potential for us to use what God has shown us to affirm things we want deep in our hearts.
So what do we do to remain impartial? We must seek humility and guard against all forms of pride. We ask our brothers or sisters in Christ to hold us accountable in advance. We regularly meet with them and allow them to speak into our lives. We allow our own assumptions about things God has shown or told us to be tested by God and our brothers or sisters in Christ. If we do not test these assumptions, the consequences can be devastating. Any of our assumptions which are proven wrong we destroy.
We use God’s promises to sustain us and error on the side of humility. This is a time where your prayer life will take a drastic turn. It becomes a place to LISTEN and HEAR from God and not solely a place to voice our wants or desires. One tactic I have found incredibly beneficial is that of taking the perspective of a steward. Pray from this perspective and it will change your life. Go ahead! Try it!
Pray this prayer... God we(I) surrender these gifts and abilities you have blessed us with. We seek to do only YOUR will. Provide us with clarity and help us to remain humble while following you. In Your Hands. -Amen