Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Spiritual Growth Obstacle

Pretending my wants and desires are Gods.

It seems really basic but it is tricky in application. It is so easy to become frustrated with life when things don't go my way if I tell myself that my intentions are right, pure, just, even holy. I should be pursuing all of that in my decisions, but I often need to be reminded that God's plans are so much greater then anything I can imagine. Originally, the problem stemmed from me telling myself that God thought my decisions and desires were good and right when God wasn't even at the center of my life.

It is one thing to know and intellectually understand something, but it is a whole other thing to feel it in your heart, and live it. That is the part that takes patience, time, and a whole lot of pursuing God's heart to reshape your own. Important to understand is this process will never be complete, how boring would that be anyhow? And how much more exciting is it to always be growing closer to our Father, with revelation after revelation, understanding him and his will for this earth better?

I was really humbled by how far I have to go when I had a conversation with a homeless man named Kevin in Portland. I have met up with him a few times at a shelter that sets up regularly on Friday nights underneath the Burnside Bridge (Nightstrike). He was explaining to me what it is like to be homeless and how it has helped him in his walk to grow closer to the Spirit. He has learned to accept the reality that is set in front of him without frustration or complaint when things don't go as he had planned. He completely relies on God to provide and in turn seeks God's will in whatever happens.

This is a guy who has some interesting views on Christianity. He is far from having "solid doctrine". At different points in his life he has been sucked into Wicca, Mormonism, and New Age thought, but he is seeking the true God. That's another thing he likes about being homeless. He can just wake up in the morning and read the Bible for hours on end with no interruption. Anyhow, the point is, while you might say he is pretty far off base in some of his beliefs, he has one thing right for sure. His willingness to follow Gods plan in his life is a solid truth, and I am striving to apply it in my own.

A good read about a man who relied on God wholly, in every situation, is God's Smuggler. This book helped me immensely in my effort to overcome this spiritual barrier.

David Knepprath

Proverbs 3:5-12 (The Message)
Trust God from the bottom of your heart;
don't try to figure out everything on your own.
Listen for God's voice in everything you do, everywhere you go;
he's the one who will keep you on track.
Don't assume that you know it all.
Run to God! Run from evil!
Your body will glow with health,
your very bones will vibrate with life!
Honor God with everything you own;
give him the first and the best.
Your barns will burst,
your wine vats will brim over.
But don't, dear friend, resent God's discipline;
don't sulk under his loving correction.
It's the child he loves that God corrects;
a father's delight is behind all this.

1 comment:

Melany said...

I think you "hit the nail on the head" when it comes to identifying the biggest obstacle that I face in spiritual growth. How many times do I provoke God to jealousy as I pursue "His will" for my life? I am all in favor of actively pursuing the desires that the Lord places in our hearts, but what is at the center of our hearts, and what fuels our vision? It has to all be centered on God, or it is futile.

-About God's Smuggler- Amen. :)