Dear Friends: “Watch, wait and see what I can do when you do ‘nothing’.”
This was the main take away message from my time in the ‘pit’ (see “Dear Friends” October 1st, 2015), the season where I felt lifeless and with little purpose. The bible greats experienced time in the pit, and if you are following the Lord, you too will have similar experiences. God always has purpose and advancement that He is working out during these times in our lives.
“Watch, wait and see” were not new words from God. Again, He reminded me of what I already knew, and showed me on a deeper level what He was capable of doing on my behalf. This was a reminder of a promise from God. The Creator Himself allowed me to feel a void I have never experienced before, and in that reminded me that He created the world out of nothing, and as result, He most certainly could do something in my ‘nothingness’. He was increasing my faith, trust and dependence. The time in the pit exposed that there was still a part of me that wants to control things and outcomes, and that many times I still rely on my own abilities and understanding instead of God’s.
M. Robert Mulholland, Jr. describes this as our ‘false self’ in “The Deeper Journey: The Spirituality of Discovering Your True Self”. Our ‘false self’ is the one that we were born with; that Adam and Eve developed as a result of their sin when they ate of the “tree of knowledge”(Genesis 2:17), the ONE thing God had warned them not to. “Ouch, busted!” (Anyone else relating?)
So as He disciplined me, as a loving Father would, He was showing me my sin: reliance on self. And at the same time, He was nudging and pointing me to the way out. The “Better Way” that He has for all of us. His message was loud and clear, “Rely on Me, not on self”. I thought I had been, but while in the pit I began to recognize how I had gotten a few degrees off. I wasn’t off by much, but think about it; if a pilot is a few degrees off the flight plan, then they will end up in a different destination than intended. Not good. Not the best way to fly. This is what happens when we take the steering wheel away from God; we veer off His best path for our lives.
So God in His love for me and for you, grants us the privilege of time in the pit. He may hedge us in with His love, so that we can stay on the TRUE path of life that He has already made for us!! This means He will allow us to experience discomfort or suffering for a time as His best is working itself out in our lives. Simply put, He continues to refine us so that His plan and purpose for our life is realized and in the end glorifies Him.
In worldly terms, it’s like taking medicine that hurts in order to heal, for example chemotherapy, Immunotherapy, heart surgery, etc. We suffer temporary pain for long-term gain. And don’t we do this by choice at times? Going to the gym, working with a personal fitness trainer, training for a Marathon. It is often hard to see the big picture when we are suffering or in pain, but God intends for these times to afford us more healing, freedom and abundance of His real life. Not life that our ‘false self’ wants to drum up, which eventually leaves us lifeless.
We have a choice to make: Are we going to trust God as a loving Father who knows what is best for His children? Are we going to trust His ways and His agenda over our own ideas and understanding? Or are we going to try to climb out of the pit that we are in with our own strength and ideas? This is where ‘rubber meets the road’ with our faith and trust.
What can He do with our ‘nothing’? Do you want to “watch, wait and see” or rely on self through manipulation and control? The choice is yours; how about taking a leap of faith and choose to exercise trust, faith and dependence?
He is the King of creating something out of nothing!
“By faith we understand that the entire universe was formed at God's command, that what we now see did not come from anything that can be seen.” Hebrews 11:3 (NLT)