Focus: Knowing God better
Philippians 3:10 (KJV) That I may know Him, and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being made conformable unto His death.
It’s time to ask ourselves what we really want. Most of us are seeking God for one thing or another right now. Change. Answers. Strength. Help…
Often, the things we are asking Him for are honest things…things we believe would make our life or the world so much better. And yet, there’s nothing. No signs, no wonders, no parting of the seas.
Seen from earth’s perspective, the answer seems so simple and clear. It’s not that our faith won’t allow us to imagine and believe…it will, and we do! So it is with almost boring persistence that we continue to storm the gates of heaven, scale the wall, plead the mercy and grace of God, lift the thing up, intercede, agree in prayer…even fast, and still there’s nothing.
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There are encouraging stories to be had about people who were once in the place we’re in—the place of waiting and watching, with joyful expectation. Of the stories we find, we see that sometimes people’s prayers have been answered in the way they wanted them to be…and other times prayers were answered in more perfect ways. Ways that boggled the minds of the ones who had prayed, because they were answered from heaven’s perspective…and that made all the difference.
When a major burden lifts and relief finally comes, it’s interesting to recall and review the process. It’s usually humbling to look back and see the progression of events. The revelation, the desire, the thanking, the praising, the humble requesting, the persisting, the crying, the whining, the rebuking, the demanding, the binding, the releasing, the waiting…
When all was said and done…what really did it? What stirred the water? Was it praying a formula? Or, was it just leaving God alone and letting Him have His way?
I don’t have the answer. I won’t pretend I know something I don’t know. It wouldn’t make sense for me to give you a form letter to God that guaranteed He’d give you whatever you want, because it just doesn’t work that way. At this point, I at least know that ‘whatever I want’ is not always ‘what God would want’.
All I want to do is try to inspire you toward the knowledge that God is so much more than we can imagination or think, and that the process of our faith has more to do with ‘knowing God’ than getting the answers we’re hoping to get.
I’m convinced that everything we go through in this life—everything—is for the purpose of knowing God. When we’re faced with a problem we can’t solve, we should spend less time asking God for the solution, than we spend seeking Him for the grace to see His hand in our situation, so that we can get to know Him better because of it.
We serve a God who wants us to know Him intimately. I’ve spent a considerable amount of time seeking God in my lifetime, yet I would hesitate to say that I presume to know Him intimately—even at this point. Human comprehension and understanding are so limited when it comes to the things of a divine nature. There is no mistaking that what we know of the Lord in this life is fractional, compared to what we will know of Him in the future.
As we examine the purpose of suffering and trials, it helps immensely to adopt the attitude that they are for our betterment and the building of our faith. When we’re able to view our circumstances in that way, there is no reason to be bitter toward a person because of a trial they caused us. Instead, we should be thanking them for how much better we got to know God, due to the situation they created, that drove us to our knees.
We should sharpen our vision of life by rising above our circumstances and finding the ability to see the purpose of God with kingdom eyes…knowing that His desire is for us to learn to praise Him at all times, for all things, no matter what.
Think of the thing you have prayed about–but don’t know the answer to, up to this point. Can you thank God for the unknowing? Can you find peace by continuing to know God better in the unknowing?
Declaration: I will find new strength by ‘watching’ for the hand of God and attempting to ‘see Him’ in my suffering and trials.
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