Men like to do things on their own. Asking for directions is for the indecisive fool who has no internal compass. Going to someone for help when you KNOW in your gut you can do it on your own does not happen. And quitting at anything, no matter how many doors shut in our face is utterly reprehensible. Now I know I am having some fun with you guys about these things, but I want to look deeper into the third example and ask yourself the following question. At what point do you realize that all of your best efforts are not getting you where you want to be?
A blog entry I wrote one year ago was Expect God’s Best. I really want you to take an extra 5 minutes and read it later because it will help drive this message home. We want the best for our lives and are willing to work hard for it. However, when do we make the decision to lay our situation down at God’s feet and let Him finish the work? This is so difficult because in our minds we feel like we can keep pushing and eventually the door will open. However, what if on the other side of that door is an elevator shaft? Here are a couple of points to help you through the process of letting go and letting God.
His Plan Is Better Than Ours
I was a big fan of The A-Team growing up. It was a great 80’s action show and their leader, Hannibal Smith coined the phrase, “I love it when a plan comes together.” As men we all have plans for our lives and they don’t always line up with what God has in store for us. We need to realize that sometimes God protects us from what we want when He knows it’s not good for us. Remember the elevator shaft we just talked about? Fall down that thing and try walking it off. Just like when parents protect their kids from what is bad for them, God does the same for his own children.
If what you want is within His will, expect it to happen in His time. Easier said than done right? Trust me I’ve been applying for professional coaching positions for 18 months! I know what a lot of you are going through. Remember our timeline for completing something is different than God’s and He is strengthening you with patience and perseverance through the waiting. We will spend time in the valley, but God will lead us THROUGH it. We know what we want, but once we receive what God has for us, we see the blessing in it. Garth Brooks may have said it best- “Some of God’s greatest gifts, are unanswered prayers.”
Reaping the Benefits
God has a storehouse of blessings waiting to bestow upon his children. The question is will you receive them? Obedience and self-control are two things we prioritize in our home. Taleen and I hold the boys accountable and each other as well. I firmly believe that we miss out on God’s blessings when we lack these qualities. There are stories all over the bible that back this up. God blessed Jacob when he was obedient and willing to sacrifice his only son Isaac. Noah and his family were saved when he ignored all those who said he was crazy and built the ark. I can go on. Oh, and by the way, depending on who you ask it may have taken Noah anywhere from 55 to 120 years to build that thing. That is patience and obedience at its finest!
“I am the LORD All-Powerful, and I challenge you to put me to the test. Bring the entire ten percent into the storehouse, so there will be food in my house. Then I will open the windows of heaven and flood you with blessing after blessing.”Malachi 3:10 CEV
When it comes down to receiving the gifts that God has for us, the ones we never expected or thought we deserved are the best. I have told the story before how I was turned down for high school and college coaching jobs back in 2011 and by the end of that year the San Francisco Giants offered me a minor league position that started in 2012. Within my first 3 years there we won 2 World Series, which included big fancy rings and monetary bonuses. That money helped us buy the home we live in now and the 8 years I spent with them helped mold me into a better coach. I know that God has something amazing planned for my family. Just like you I am learning how to balance working hard towards the goal and giving Him the reigns while I sit back and ride shotgun.
Here are some things to think about this week:
- Do I have a group of men I trust that I can go to for Godly wisdom and advice?
- Does the endeavor I am trying to accomplish honor God?
- What more can I do to try and accomplish my goal?
- Have I gone as far as I can and now it’s time to trust God with the result?
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