Self-Serving Self

The Nothing

Leola is thinking about so many things lately that she cannot concentrate on one in particular. She is thinking about courage. How much courage does it take to be in the will of God and to be completely dependent on God? She is thinking about shallow loving. Her skills to love are shallow and she wants to love deeper. She is thinking about when God is going to use her to teach life skills again. Her mind races more often now than before. So much so that she cannot think well enough even to write her blog. She started with courage and couldn’t figure out what to say in the end. She decided to keep the idea for a future blog. The concept is lost to her. She is not sure how she will come out the other side of this whole brain fart days but she does know one thing – God knows everything and He knows about this too.

What subject does He want her to write about? If I go into the Bible and finger pick a verse will it give her revelation? Will anyone miss it if she didn’t post a blog? She is resting on the idea that this is a good thing because she is not as frustrated as she used to be. In the olden days she would have spent hours on the computer typing away and throwing it all away. She would shout at God because He is the one who gave her this talent to write in the first place. If he wants her to write He will give her the ideas but they all seem so far away. There is nothing!

In the fifteen years I’ve written for God I have had many days where I couldn’t write a thing. All of the ideas work out to nothing so I have come to one and only one conclusion when this happens – I have begun to rely on myself to do the writing. Proverbs 3:5 says we should trust in the Lord with all of our heart and lean not on our own understanding. When our own understanding takes over it is hard to trust in God. The work that we do, as good as it sounds, is not the work of God but the work of ourselves. It is self-serving even if it is for God. Courage to do what He wants us to do comes from Him alone. Deep love for His people will also come from Him. When God asks us to do something He will provide the way to do it. All we have to do is obey and trust.

 The Worthlessness of Understanding Understanding!

There have been many times when Leola thought she was doing the will of God but she was doing what she had understood His will to be. She thinks about courage and thinks about shallow love but knows that even those huge topics belong to God. Leola cannot have courage to do what the folks in the book of Acts did if God has not gone before her to get the people ready to receive her. She will never love anyone with any kind of depth until God gives her the understanding to do it. She has been racking her brain to figure out how to do these things and cannot. They are to deep for her. Her understanding is worthless to her because her understanding proves she doesn’t trust God enough to take care of this in His time. How she has been working hard to do what she believes God is asking her to do. Leola has got to relax and let God do the work. She is learning this concept as she learns how worthless even her understanding of her understanding is. She is reminded of a Psalm she read and will now memorize because it speaks to these times. Psalm 131 says Lord, my heart is not haughty nor my eyes lofty, neither do I concern myself with great matters nor with things to profound for me. Surely I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a weaned child with his mother. Like a weaned child is my soul within me. O Leola, hope in the Lord from this time forth and forever. [modifications mind]   She has read this before and knew the implication yet forgot them. She has been talking to God for three days wondering what the problem was when all along she had fallen into the same trap of self-servingness she had fallen in so many times before. “Lord,” she says, “Please help me to recognize this sooner! Amen.”

There will be plenty of times in our lives we rely on our own understanding without even knowing it. It will sneak up on us and cause lawlessness or staleness in our walk with God. If we are going along like gangbusters then all of the sudden we are stopped check whose work we are doing. If we are aware that sin has crept into out walk with God, check whose work we are doing. Be vigilant about who we are following because we want to follow Jesus if we want our work to be good work.

Meditation verse for this week: Proverbs 3:5; Psalm 131