So, why do we do the things we do? I certainly hope that your answer is not “because I want to”. It would be nice to be able to assume that we are all doing what we do because of a higher level of motivation than that.
But Solomon had it right… Again I am reminded of Oswald Chamber’s statement that you can always tell who the true believers are by the fact that they are sitting in the corner laughing uproariously at how ludicrous the whole situation is.
So, what do we do when we’re not sure what He wants done?
That’s the bottom line isn’t it? Right now, I am not so gracefully sliding through a period (it’s been a couple of years now) where I am entirely dependent on His lead and I’m not hearing anything. Now I am busy. Of course, I am busy — aren’t we all? But what am I doing with my time?
The phrase that keeps running through my mind is “occupy until He comes” but I have no idea where that comes from or if it is scriptural. The basic idea is to keep busy — idle hands are the devil’s play thing, and so on.
James talks about it a little: James 1:25
But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.
But I do not want to be so busy that I miss the still small voice if He chooses to speak in that manner (and He certainly has in my past).
’tis a puzzlement…
How do you choose the projects you work on?
This would seem to be an important and fundamental question. Obviously, we pray and seek His guidance. We discern the best we can and do what we think we should. However, we need to be constantly on guard as our flesh is a self-centered thieving liar who cannot be trusted.
Hearing the Lord
This is the key of our entire life on the planet. There have been many teachings on it. Let’s summarize quickly. How do we hear the Lord?
- He can speak directly: audibly or internally. Here the problem is discerning the source of the speaking. As you know, there are three sources to our thoughts or internal communications: the Spirit of God, the Creep, and the flesh. Determining who’s talking is not always easy.
- He can use scripture. Here again we need to be careful because not all scripture applies to the project at hand. “Kill the Philistines” may apply to your sales tactics. Again, what led us to that scripture we are certain applies.
- He can use circumstance. But again, our response to circumstance can be Godly, fleshly, or worse. The circumstances may be guidance from God, an attack of the enemy, or the result of our sin.
- He can use other people. He is not limited in his guidance. He used a donkey to speak to Balaam. We are in an age where we need to be very careful of our sources. This is the time of the great shaking, beginning with the church.
Bottom line: be careful!
The operating scripture, as far as i can tell is found in Phillippians.
Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.
The key is probably verse thirteen. As I recall, one of the translations says, God works in you both to make you willing and to make you able. We need to rely on this, trust him in this, but never take it for granted. We really do need to work out our salvation with fear and trembling, awe and reverence, care and devotion.
So, why bother?
Only because we believe that He has a plan and that He knows what He is doing even though we do not.
Do the best you can to follow Him. Even Jesus said [in John 5] that he only did what he saw the Father doing. If that is good enough for Jesus it should certainly be a goal of ours.
Do not be caught following your own desires, that way leads to death.