Thursday, October 29, 2015

How to Walk Out of Self-Sufficiency {It's Easier Than You Might Think...}

Faith is hard to come by some days. 

This former perfectionist still drifts towards self-sufficiency.  The spiritual disciplines can become the end instead of the vehicle to journey into His Presence. 

My stressed out body lets me know that I have wandered, and now I recognize that my mental state of “being out of sorts” has little to do with the pressures of the world or the schemes of the enemy, but rather it is because of my heart, still prone to wander…

I need to change my perspective…like Job.   
My life hasn’t been reduced like his.  That is perspective right there!  

I have been in Job lately, reading chronologically with my sweet teen through the Bible.  Job was asking “why God…” when all of a sudden, God comes in {after 37 long chapters of man’s wisdom, mind you} and “spoke to Job out of the storm.”

Selah…{pause and think about that!}.

God has a few questions for Job, like: 

 Who is this that obscures my plans
    with words without knowledge?

  Brace yourself like a man;
    I will question you,
    and you shall answer me.
 “Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation?
    Tell me, if you understand.
  Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know!
    Who stretched a measuring line across it?

What is the way to the abode of light?
    And where does darkness reside?
  Can you take them to their places?

    Do you know the paths to their dwellings?

Surely you know, for you were already born! 
 You have lived so many years!

God continues speaking of all sorts of wonders, each one illustrating that He is the one in total control - the creation and the continuing rhythm of life…all are sustained by God’s hand.  We can only comprehend a fraction of the entire picture of our lives and all of life on earth; then the heavens are even beyond this. When we look at just the simple processes that we observe everyday, we can begin to move to looking at our lives from God's point of view, instead of our limited earth-bound vision.

Whenever we question “why, God”, we show that we believe we are the ones in control.   
There it is again - my self-sufficiency rearing up in my being…a grandiose heart blind to its short sightedness!  Such is the nature of the flesh!

Notice the bolded and italicized verse, Job 38:2, and these particular words: “that obscures my plans with words without knowledge”.   God is saying that we actually hide our ability to perceive His plans for us when we enter into that domain ruled by our own fruitless words and thinking! 

So, when faith seems far away and I have drifted into controlling my life apart from Him again... 

a walk outside grounds me. 

I can see the heavens, grass, trees, rocks and insects. 
I hear birds and crickets.   
Depending on my direction, I can walk beside a pond or come up to a vegetable garden.  
A spent dandelion head reminds me of the charm of making a wish.   
A hopeful kitten checks for a treat in my hand.  
It is fall, so masses of color are everywhere.  
Leaves let go of their anchor and pirouette to the ground.   
Dried abundance crunches underfoot.   
The air smells pungent and warm.   
I am in the midst of everything God has designed…
                  and my perspective is lifted from hidden “whys” to the true questions…

“How should I respond to this?”
“What do You want me to learn from this?”