We have all had that defining moment where you are told to ask GOD into your heart and your life will be better. Although, I believe in the evangelist sense this is just a baby step to a much harder truth we must face as servants of Jesus. We do not just have to ask GOD to come into our heart and live; we must trust in HIM in all we do after that. Every choice, every decision from that moment on, does not revolve around you and your feelings, it is all for HIS greater good. This sounds easy, but I think it’s harder than the simple prayer. What defines you as a servant of GOD is what you do after you decide to stop and follow HIM. Do you look at the Bible and accept every single word as the word of GOD or do you fight against what you want it to say? Do you trust GOD enough to say no matter how dark it gets; I will listen and do what you say? (James 4:7) Do you give all the control away to GOD and let HIM steer your ship in the direction HE wants you to go? The reason this is so hard is because in this broken world we have learned freewill. We have felt like we were the ones in control, making all the choices. So, giving away the reins feels like we are giving away our own comfort and protection. It’s scary to not have control, but that is where you must put your faith in the fact that GOD takes care of everything and HE will take care of you too. Think about it, HE does not let the birds starve and they are just birds. (Matthew 6:26) How can we think for even a moment that HE would not take care of our every need, when HE died brutally because HE wanted us with HIM for eternity. This is the hardest decision you will ever make in life, but it is more about living in the fear of GOD by faith than anything else. It’s easy to get through life and feel successful if we stick to societies plans, although, if we give all the control away and say “it’s all yours anyway GOD and I will do exactly what you say,” it is here that we will be most rewarded with wisdom, power and love.
Years ago, I heard someone say, “to be close to GOD you have to read the bible and pray.” I remember thinking that this cannot really be all there is, to being close with GOD. I wanted a more complex answer to what seems to be a huge religious question. Over time though I realized that this cliché answer was the right answer. We tend to over analyze things as humans and our relationship with GOD is one of them. In the book of Hosea he says “Bring words to GOD…” (Hosea 14:2) This is why it is so important that we pray. Have you ever tried to talk to a small child who is trying to tell you their problem but just can’t get the words out? I believe we are like that with GOD, small children trying to fix the problem in our head before we ever get it out of our mouth. I shack my head and think of how GOD must think about us. HE can easily fix whatever it is we are going through, if we just tell HIM. It is only through time with GOD that we get to know HIM on a personal level and we can speak easier to HIM. If most everything else in our life has to do with practice and learning, prayer should not be any different. If we first believe the basic truth of the Bible and give all our control to HIM, then HE will lead us to infinite wisdom. To be close to GOD all you have to do is spend time with HIM and HE will open your eyes and heart to more than you can dream of.
I find that being open about GOD is easy, but debating the truth of religion is very hard for me. I do not like telling people that they are wrong and sometimes when you are speaking with someone who does not fully understand the truth of the Bible, it feels that way. Although, as Pastor Drew spoke this morning, he pointed out that in the book of Matthew it says, Gods word and your testimony are powerful enough to make even the smallest seed grow into a massive tree. (Matthew 13:31-32) We cannot worry if the simple seed is offensive because Jesus himself had an out of the box testimony that was considered offensive. We must simply do as God instructs and plant the small seed and HE will grow it. We should not worry that we will offend or not have the right answer to every question. All we must do in this life is share the word of the GOD and trust that GOD has given you the right tools to get the job done.
When I was newly married, my husband was a Marine who got deployed a lot to the war. I use to worry every time the doorbell and the phone rang that something bad was going to happen. After a few months of this I just stopped cold turkey. I simply told myself that I trusted that the military trained my husband well enough to go to war and that they gave him the tools to keep himself alive. Now, I knew that bad things could still occur out of his control, but I put my trust in the fact that he was educated enough to endure this. I believe that we have to do the same with GOD. We must believe without a shadow of a doubt that GOD has given us all the tools you need to endure whatever you are going through from a simple conversation to unimaginable terror. Bad things will still occur in this world that we will never be able to explain it, but we need have enough faith in our creator that we have the exact tools inside us for any job. Having this amount of faith can be hard to explain, but all we must do is plant the seed and GOD will do the rest.
We are not all guaranteed a perfect life free from heartache, but through GOD we are guaranteed peace in everything. God will give us understanding and wisdom as we hand over control that we never even had to begin with. As we walk on the path lead by HIS shining light, we must see that our purpose lies in HIM and HIM alone. The breath in our lungs to the prayers in our minds are all there because GOD allows it. He says come to me and I will show you a better way. (Matthew 11:28) All we need to do is read the word and pray. It is there, in our relationship with the Creator, that we are lead to overwhelming fear, unimaginable wisdom and satisfying peace.