Note: The original version of this devotion was originally published March 3, 2008 as part of the weekly HIS TOUCH OF HOPE devotions I wrote and sent out by email between 2003 and 2009. But as with everything related to God, the Truth it contains does not become out of date and sometimes it is good to be reminded of how He works. ~ Elizabeth
8 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, ” declares the LORD. 9″As the heavens are higher than the earth, So are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isa. 55:8-9 NIV)
27 “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.” (John 10:27-30 NIV)
7…these are the words of him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open. (Rev. 3:7b NIV)
Many of us have come to understand that it is in following God’s will for our lives that we will find the greatest joy, inner peace and personal satisfaction in life. However, the difficulty can be figuring out what God’s will is.
We may have reached the point where we understand that God frequently speaks to us by dropping thoughts into your minds (versus via an audible voice). We already may have learned one way to tell whether it is His voice is to take our thoughts captive to Christ. That is, to weigh what we think we “hear” with the Word of God. Since God is the Word and His Word is Truth, He cannot change and He cannot tell a lie. Therefore God cannot ask anything of us which would contradict the Truth of who He is as found in His Word.
However, even when we think we are hearing from Him, often we think we are hearing from Him, often we can afraid to follow where He leads. We are convinced His way is best (and it is!) but we fear hearing wrong or misunderstanding. In these instances it helps to remember our position in relationship with God.
When we become believers, we are born again – spiritually instead of physically. We become adopted children of God where He is and remains the parent.
We begin as babies which feed on spiritual milk. We grow in our relationship with Him and become weaned children on spiritual food. Yet, no matter how old we get in physical human years, because He is God and therefore superior forever, we will be as children in comparison.
God is very clear. His ways are not our ways. In fact, His ways and thoughts are superior to ours (and thus beyond our comprehension) as the heavens are above the earth! When we try to put this difference into understandable terms, it can help to consider perhaps we are to God as toddlers are to their parents.
A toddler is no longer on milk, but solid food. A toddler can follow where a parent leads. But the parent still is aware that the toddler’s experience base is way too narrow for it to fully comprehend everything the parent tells is. For this reason, the parent is more concerned with the child’s attitude towards instructions that perfect execution. The parent also takes whatever steps necessary to safeguard the little one along the way.
For instance, before giving a toddler instruction and setting it on its way, a parent puts child-proof locks on any doors not meant for us to go through. When we try these doors, they won’t even open. In addition, as long as the parent can tell the child is doing his or her best to obey given his or her ability to understand, there is no anger when the child takes a wrong step.
This is much like it must be with God. So long as we are doing our best with our limited human comprehension to obey what we think He is telling us, He will not abandon us or be angry if we mis-step. Quite the contrary, seeing our heart for obedience, but understanding our limitations, He will already have gone ahead and put child-proof locks on any doors not meant for us to go through. When we try these doors, they won’t even open. In addition, if we begin to go in a direction which is not His perfect will, He will call to us. If we don’t understand, then He will come and take our hands, or even scoop us up in His arms and move us, doing wahtever is necessary as our perfect parent to make sure we get back on track going the direction He always intended us to go.
Now it is quite a different story, if we hear His voice and instruction, but defiantly try to run in the opposite direction. Then we should expect consequences which aren’t so pleasant. But if we sincerely seek His will, we do not have to fear losing our way. He will take care of us.
So be encouraged to check your heart-attitude. Is it surrendered to Him? Listen to where You think He is leading. Dare to take a step in that direction. Try the door before you. God will not leave you to your own devices. Trust our perfect Father God to be Almight, Omniscient, Loving God and sovereignly direct you where you need to go.
3 In reply Jesus declared, “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.” 4″How can a man be born when he is old?” Nicodemus asked. “Surely he cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb to be born!” 5 Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. 6 Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. 7 You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.'” (John 3:3-7 NIV)
12 Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God– 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God. (John 1:12-13 NIV)
5 he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will — 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8 that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding. (Eph. 1:5-8)
2 He called a little child and had him stand among them. 3 And he said: “I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. (Matt. 18:2-3 NIV)
18 Yet the LORD longs to be gracious to you; he rises to show you compassion. For the LORD is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him! 19 O people of Zion, who live in Jerusalem, you will weep no more. How gracious he will be when you cry for help! As soon as he hears, he will answer you. 20 Although the LORD gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, your teachers will be hidden no more; with your own eyes you will see them. 21 Whether you turn to the right or the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “Think this way; walk in it.” (Isa. 30:18-21 NIV)
Selah! [Pause, and calmly think of that!]
Until next time “may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Rom. 15:13 NIV)
PLEASE view the new music video for “RESTORE” (with choir) on youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=piQYnPY1vIA&feature=mfu_in_order&list=UL (Made by upcoming, Holy Spirit-filled film director, Olivia Mowry.)
Elizabeth Fulgaro is a wife, mother, writer, inspirational speaker, worship leader, composer, singer & recording artist. She is also a Certified Financial Planner and Accredited Financial Counselor with a heart for helping Christians understand and steward their finances God’s way.
For books, worship cds, Bible studies and teachings written by Elizabeth Fulgaro or to schedule her to come speak to your group please visit www.holyspiritpress.org Worship music audio clips can be found at www.cdbaby.com/Artist/ElizabethFulgaro For information on her work for the military and their families please visit www.eaglesnestfoundation.org Eagles Nest Foundation is a 501(c)3 corporation. Contributions are tax-deductible.