Where We Most Need To Be
Where We Most Need To Be
Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.
1 Peter 4:19
“In Jesus the places we don’t want to go are the places we most need to be. They connect us to the power of the resurrection life.” Mike Hipsley shared this in a sermon last week. As the Lord has done via almost 30 years of teachings from the pulpit of LifePoint, I was mentally hooked on that line.
When Mike said this, it trumped the current distraction of what my teenage sons were doing during service. I began to mull it over, sending it round and round the perpetually-in-motion hamster wheel of thoughts bombarding my mind.
What does it mean to avoid what Jesus is calling us to? What does it look like? Do we really think we have the power to thwart the power of God in our lives? Sometimes we do so boldly as Jonah did and run in the opposite direction that God is directing us, but more often our approach is a bit more subtle. We skirt His will in a complex two-step, staying just close enough to try and convince ourselves we aren’t too far off what He’s calling us to, but just far enough away to be out of fellowship with the One who gives us the strength to walk that very path we are called to.
So we pray, Lord, that our clinging would be to You alone, who has promised to walk with us every step of the way. Impress upon our faint hearts that in You, there is no desperate runs through dark woods alone. Instead, there is our constant Companion who has promised to never leave us or forsake us, on every road we travel in this life.
Our God is no god that can be out maneuvered, or subtly bent to our own will. For that, I am grateful because what a small god that would be! He and He alone knows the course set for our lives that’s meant to draw us closer into fellowship with Him. He often deposits guide posts into our lives meant to serve as the blinders to the very obvious distractors from His will. But, like tantrum-throwing toddlers, we go about kicking down those guideposts in favor of paths that appear to offer safety and security we crave.
What fuels that foolish desire to try and direct our own paths? Ultimately, seems it’s our chief desire to avoid pain and retain what we think is that elusive/faux control over our own lives (which typically has as its number one goal to avoid pain.) It doesn’t matter how many times we logically realize that growth is always accompanied by pain; we still choose what looks like a hand in hand walk in the park with a loved one over what appears as the scary nighttime run through the woods alone. Yet we are never alone.
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