Monday, August 24, 2009

Walking by Faith, not by Sight

Don resigned from his ministry position at Lamb and Lion Ministries a few weeks ago. It was hard to leave Dr. Reagan and the other employees and Board members because they are more than co-laborers...they are extended family and we love them all so much; however, the decision to leave was an easy one for we knew it was God's timing for Don to resign when he did. Change is never very easy as it usually involves leaving a network of people God has placed in ours lives in one way or another. As for provision, they gave Don a severance package that was a huge blessing and one for which we are very undeserving, but very grateful.

So, many people have asked us, "What are you doing now?" From a worldly perspective, Don should be pounding the pavement looking for another job and honestly, that would be the easy thing for him to do. We know that God wants us listening and obeying Him more than anything else we could be doing. So, what is God telling us to do? He is simply telling us to His Word and grow closer to Him...wait...walk by faith and not by sight...pray some more...wait some more...not give in to things that distract us from His will for our lives...pray...minister to others...pray. We know that God is preparing us for the next thing, but during that time we know we are to wait, pray and trust Him until He says "do something!"

You know, as I was reading about all the great people in Hebrews 11, the "Hall of faith" chapter...two things really struck me. One, that God used incapable, humble, obedient followers to fulfill His will. Why did God pick his children who had those characteristics? Because if they were the opposite (capable in their own strength, arrogant or proud and disobedient), God's will wouldn't have been accomplished and He would've have gotten the glory! Instead God shows us that he uses our willingness to serve Him, our giving every part of ourselves to be used for His glory, and our obedience for His plans and purposes. He can't use us at all if we don't give everything we have to Him 100% (our plans, our desires, our bodies, our gifts and talents).

The second thing he called to my attention, were not all the main people listed (the ones I usually focus on when I read that chapter), but verses 32-40 are the ones that stuck out like a sore thumb: And what more shall I say? For time will fail me if I tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and Samuel and the prophets, who by faith conquered kingdoms, performed {acts of} righteousness, obtained promises, shut the mouths of lions, quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, from weakness were made strong, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight. Women received {back} their dead by resurrection; and others were tortured, not accepting their release, so that they might obtain a better resurrection; and others experienced mockings and scourgings, yes, also chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were tempted, they were put to death with the sword; they went about in sheepskins, in goatskins, being destitute, afflicted, ill-treated ({men} of whom the world was not worthy), wandering in deserts and mountains and caves and holes in the ground. And all these, having gained approval through their faith, did not receive what was promised, because God had provided something better for us, so that apart from us they would not be made perfect.
Wow! From a worldly perspective, these men and women would not be considered successful in any way shape or form! But, God's way's are contrary to the world's ways (Satan's ways). We know that there are hundreds of thousands if not millions of people who could be added to this list of the faithful.
We don't want to do anything in our own strength or to run ahead of the Lord in anyway. We want to wait on Him and only do what He tells us to do, when He tells us to do it. We want to be on this list with the faithful ones. Are we worried? No, because we are living out Phil. 4:6-7, "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
We just found out that our van needs $3000 in transmission repairs, so God is allowing us to walk out the above promise in a big way!
The bottom line is, we know that He will never leave us or forsake us and that we can trust Him as we walk by faith and not by sight. Following Christ is certainly an adventure, never other words..."never a dull moment!" :o)
One more thing...we have more than one close friend who is close to dying and our prayers go out to them and their families right now. We are so grateful that these friends know the Lord and are eager to be with Him in heaven. God is using these circumstances to remind us how short life is and how living for Him and Him alone is doing the hard thing, but at the same time it is also the best, most fulfilling, rewarding, awesome life to live! :o)