Tuesday, September 9, 2008

FULL CONTROL

There is no formula for living wholly dependent upon the Lord. All I can offer to you is what God has been teaching me in this area. He has shown me two simple things about how I’m to give him full control.

First, I must be convinced the Lord is anxious and willing to make his will known to me, even in the smaller details of my life. I have to believe that the Spirit who abides in me knows God’s will for me, and that he will guide me, lead me and speak to me.

“When he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth…. He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you” (John 16:13-14).

Maybe right now you are in the midst of some affliction, perhaps one that has been caused by too quick a decision. Even so, the Lord promises you, “Your inner ear will hear my Spirit speaking to you, ‘Go that way. Do this. And don’t do that…’”

Secondly, we have to pray with unwavering faith for power to obey God’s direction. Scripture says, “Let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord” (James 1:6-7). When God tells us to do something, we need power to stay the course and obey him fully. Over five decades of life in ministry, I have learned that Satan and the flesh will always plant doubts and questions in my mind. And I need strength from heaven not to say “yes” to any situation when Jesus has said “no.”

Many of us pray, “Lord, I know what you told me. But I’m still not sure that was your voice speaking. I’m not sure I’m spiritual enough even to recognize your voice. Please, just open or close the door for me on this matter.”

That is not the faith response he’s looking for from his children. You can pray all you want, for hours or even days at a time. But if you don’t pray with faith—believing the Holy Spirit will guide you, as Jesus has promised—you will never have the mind of God conveyed to you. He waits until he sees you’re committed to accepting whatever he says, and to obeying it without question.