January 4, 2004


Mrs. Tek7
I got a little windy--I apologize in advance.

Quick links to today's exerpt from MUFHH:
Classic Edition
Updated Edition

As Christians, it is our desire to follow the will of God.  In today's devotional, Oswald Chambers warns us not to get so eager that we jump ahead and fail to allow God to lead.  Two key words here: follow and lead.  You've probably heard the phrase, "with God as my copilot..." or something to that effect.  Problem is, it's not exactly Scripturally sound.  If God is your copilot, for Heaven's sake, switch seats!  The copilot is the relief pilot of an aircraft, and it must be our prayer that we give God full control, even when we think we're doing alright.  Even the best of intentions, if not in line with God's timing, are not within His will.  Our God is not second-rate.  He leads, and we follow.

Sometimes, in our Christian walk, we come across what Chambers calls a "blank space," or a time of waiting.  We get so excited to serve Him, or we get that ants-in-the-pants syndrome, and we feel the urge to do something.  Instead of trying to run ahead of God, wait for His direction.  These blank spaces come for a reason.  God uses these times to teach us sanctification and service.

Discussion Question 1:
In what ways do we fail to wait through the blank spaces?

I can think of one example of a time when I tried to run through a blank space, and I hit a dead end.  I was a freshman in my church's college department, and we were offered several opportunities to participate in missions.  I thought, "Wow, what a great opportunity!" and I began praying to see where God wanted me to go.  After a while, I was really feeling led to go on a summer trip to Tanzania, and, in my excitement, I immediately told my college pastor.  When I brought it up with my family, however, they did not share my enthusiasm, and they were adamant that I either stayed home or found another (cheaper) opportunity closer to home.  I was terribly frustrated, but when I finally settled down, I realized my mistake.  I got the "what," but I didn't stay in prayer long enough for the "when".  Though we may know early on what God's will is, we should never do it on the impulse of that feeling.  Chambers writes, "Wait for God's time to bring it round and He will do it without any heartbreak or disappointment.  When it is a question of the providential will of God, wait for God to move."  I still believe it is God's desire that I go to Africa, but now I am waiting on His perfect timing.

DQ 2:
Can you think of a time when you went ahead of God through a blank space?  Or a time when you waited for God's guidance?  What were the results?

Chambers points out that "natural devotion" may be enough to attract us to Jesus, but it is not, in and of itself, enough.  It does not make us disciples.  Take Peter in John 13:37 (NASB): He asks, "Lord, why can I not follow You right now?  I will lay down my life for You."  In the next verse, Jesus replies, "Will you lay down your life for Me? Truly, truly, I say to you, a rooster will not crow until you deny Me three times."  Peter was "honest but ignorant."  He thought he knew what was up, and he had good intentions, but Jesus knew Peter more deeply than Peter knew himself.  

DQ 3:
How can we avoid being "honest but ignorant"?

Many will often tell you, "know thyself."  I suppose that's all well and good, but we must always know in our minds and in our hearts that God will always know us better.  He leads.  We follow.

Some other verses to bear in mind:

"The plans of the heart belong to man, but the answer of the tongue is from the Lord.  All the ways of a man are clean in his own sight, but the Lord weighs the motives.  Commit your works to the Lord and your plans will be established."  
Proverbs 16:1-3

"Many plans are in a man's heart, but the counsel of the Lord will stand."  
Proverbs 19:21

"Man's steps are ordained by the Lord, how then can man understand his way?"  Proverbs 20:24

"I know, O Lord, that a man's way is not in himself, nor is it in a man who walks to direct his steps." Jeremiah 10:23
*claps* Thank you for another fantastic commentary, Ember.

I am continually amazed by Chambers' ability to succinctly tell us what we assume about Christianity when we are yet immature in the faith and then tell us how it is--all the while encouraging, but not "babying," us.

I admit that today's devotional hit on a somewhat delicate nerve for me. Receiving a prophecy several years ago, I was overwhelmed with the scope of God's plan for my life. I began making plans, saying, "If I am to accomplish this much, then I will need to get started right away."

But, after graduating high school, I spent a year at home fighting depression (and doing a poor job, I might add) and going nowhere in terms of advancing any sort of ministry. Even though I felt more and more like a stranger in my own church, I did not turn from my faith or give up on fulfilling the tasks God had given me.

In May 1999, I formed the Tribe of Judah. At the time, I was praying for a way to "put my hand to the plow," but when I made that first post on Battle.net, I was just looking for a way to make Starcraft fun again. God answered both my prayers and, as the saying goes, the rest is history.

While there are still tremendous distances to go in building the ministry I saw in that prophecy, I feel as though I am moving forward, albeit slower than I had first planned. Still, I feel this is God's plan and I have learned to patiently handle what is, for me, one of the most difficult tasks in life: waiting.

This particular devotional is wonderfully encouraging as it reminds me that I must continually surrender to God's plans instead of stubbornly pressing on with my own. It's always exciting to wonder what He has planned for me next!
Last edited: