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“Trust in the LORD with all your heart
and do not lean on your own understanding.”
– Proverbs 3:5 –
If one were to attempt to summarize human nature as a whole in words,
it would be no shock to most that the writer might describe us as a people
who are quite simply very fickle in our commitments – that’s right,
we tend to spin like a weather vain rather than hold our ground
when it comes to keeping our word.
Have you been on the disappointing end of a failed promise or twenty?
A Father tells his daughter he will be right back,
only to get bogged down at work for hours.
A son tells his mother that he will get all his chores caught up
but somehow gets entranced with a video game.
A husband tells his wife that He will get that anniversary weekend booked
only to lose track time in the scurry of life.
Have not casual, small-scale failed promises become part of our “everyday”?
Has not our media become saturated with promise after promise about products and services
that fail to match the hype and expectation?
Our world is broken because we are broken . . and tragically,
our failed promises show up all too often in the serious, large-scale category as well.
So what do you when life has led you through a valley,
a wilderness season, a time of loss and less?
How do you know who you can trust?
One thing for sure, you eventually find out who your real friends and allies are
vs. those who were just renting space in your “good times”.
The stated intentions and commitments of others are viewed differently
and you reluctantly allow yourself to “hang” on the words of others
because your soul is not sure you can absorb being “hung out to dry” even just one more time.
Have you been there . . you know,
that vulnerable intersection where hope and longing are stirred
by “sincere and heartfelt words” from another or several others?
Perhaps a long-deferred passion, pursuit and calling seems as though it could come to life again . .
maybe winter has an end and a spring time of new life and opportunity is just ahead.
I have heard those words . .
they come in phrases like “David, I want to invest in you” . .
“I want to see you thrive and fly like you have never flown before” . .
“You possess all the key qualities and skills” . . “You are with family now” . .
“You are on of us, you are part of the team” . . “We can’t wait to do life together”.
Those kind of words sink deep to the soul and a tiny light starts to flicker again
and you think to yourself, maybe just maybe I am home.
You dig deep and summon the God-given grace
to embrace the opportunity that has apparently embraced you . .
only to discover within hours and days
that “broken” in the lives of those who sought to draw you in to a new season of ministry
will necessarily choke out the sustainability of their commitment . .
and their words suddenly become little more than failed promises.
In those moments, it is ever so important to know what and Who really anchors your soul.
Here are three timeless truths from God’s word that can help:
1) God Establishes Our Path
Though circumstances may suggest so on the surface,
we are never subject to the whimsy and fickleness of man.
If you have placed your faith in Jesus Christ, than you can count on Psalm 37:23,
“The LORD makes firm the steps of the one who delights in him.”
We never have to “sell ourselves” into opportunity next;
that only reveals the sadness of a God-people who apparently think they serve a pretty small God.
The freedom of the Christ-life is that everyday we get to,
“Commit your way to the LORD, Trust also in Him, and He will do it.” (Psalm 37:5)
2) God Qualifies The Called And You Are Called
Our world has so many ways of subtly and not-so-subtly messaging
that we don’t measure up to the task and demands at hand.
Often, especially in the church, the very ones who push us to the curb
are doing little more than masking fear of their own personal inadequacies
and using power and control as their medication.
I love Max Lucado’s thoughts on this topic ..
Satan will tell you that God has an IQ requirement or an entry fee…
that he employs only specialists and experts, governments and high-powered personalities.
When Satan whispers such lies, dismiss him with this truth:
God stampeded the first-century society with swaybacks, not thoroughbreds!
Their collars were blue, their hands were calloused,
and there is no evidence that Jesus chose them because they were smarter or nicer than the guy next door.
The one thing they had going for them was a willingness
to take a step when Jesus said, “Follow me.”
Remember, religion is all about sorting out and calling “The Qualified”
and quite frankly, God hates religion. His love, mercy and grace is in the full-time business
of qualifying the called, “The One who calls you is faithful, and He will do it.” (1 Thessalonians 5:24)
3) God Is God And Men Are Not
When the promises of others fall flat, we must be mindful
that we all are desperately in need of God’s mercy . . and that includes you and I.
We too have failed to own up perfectly to all our commitments.
Rejoice in the fact that God’s word can be trusted 100% of the time
and that The Perfect One came to rescue us, the imperfect, from our imperfection,
“God is not human, that he should lie, not a human being, that he should change his mind.
Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill?” (Numbers 23:19)
Forgive the fractured (starting with yourself) and follow The Faithful One . .
He will establish your path in His time by His own hand . .
His calling over your life is sure and without conditions . .
He will be true to Himself because He is The Truth . .
He will not disappoint and leave you with a pile of . .
“Father, you are my rock and my fortress and my deliverer,
My God, my rock, in whom I take refuge;
My shield and the horn of my salvation,
my stronghold. Amen”
How is God encouraging you today?