There are times in our lives when we don’t want someone, even God, to interfere with what we want to do! Kids can be stubborn, hard-headed and head-strong. They want something, want to go somewhere, and want to do something …that in their mind is an absolute must for the moment. Adults are the same way! In fact, it would be safe to say that in most cases our young have learned this not-so-complementary trait from us!
We want to do our own thing in life … we want to go our own way … plan and take our own journey … even if it means ending up in the briars and thistles of self-will! We actually reason within ourselves that we have the ability to control our own destiny … to control our own future. That’s what a number of self-help guru’s will tell us. Nothing could be further from the truth. Perhaps the reason so many miss real happiness, peace and success is because they have allowed the world to define happiness, peace and success! Listen to the world and your life will ultimately end in disaster. If only we could reach the hearts and minds of the young with this important truth before the world reaches their hearts. Read the words of Jesus recorded in Matthew 7:21-27 and take some time to reflect on their meaning and relevance to your life and the life of others.
Jesus was in the garden praying concerning the will of the Father. He asked the Father to “remove this cup from me.” What Jesus said at the end of the prayer, “…nevertheless not my will, but Yours, be done” is such a powerful statement that came from His heart! Jesus was willing to surrender to whatever the Father wanted done. He was willing to endure the suffering of the cross. He was willing to take the shame of the cross. He was willing to endure being forsaken by all. Jesus Christ was willing to do the will of the Father even though it wasn’t pleasant.
The will of God is not always going to be pleasant for the person who offers up these potent words in prayer unto the Lord. Sometimes the will of God will lead us to self-sacrifice, to suffering and even loss. Sometimes the will of God means that you won’t get your way. Genuine inner peace, true strength of character comes at a very high price … a price that far too many are just not willing to pay! At the heart of the problem in a person’s life is who controls their will.
- Do we want to assume and maintain that control?
- Or, do we choose to turn that control over to the One that made us, provides for us, and who will one day judge us? Think about this …would you?
Now, we know that our Creator has given to each of us the ability to reason, to decide and to choose and then act … it is called free will. We must remember that as has always been the case in God’s dealings with mankind, with every privilege there is a corresponding responsibility and in this case it will be our accountability to Him for the choices we make (Romans 12:4).
It’s a great idea for one to make plans for the future and it’s even biblical, but every plan … all preparation must be submitted to God (James 4:13-17). It’s a great thing to offer up our gifts and talents to God, but it is also important to understand there is really no profit if we give God something other than what He has asked for! A familiar question of our day is, “What Would Jesus Do?” The answer is, “the will of His Father!”
May each one of us honestly inquire daily into what God wants from us, into what He expects of us … and then do it (Matthew 22:37-39)! There is no more potent and powerful prayer that can be offered from our heart! Just remember God holds us accountable to really mean it (Ecclesiastes 5:1-4).
Bill Fairchild, Jr.