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What next?

At some point, we all ask the question, what do I do now?  Everything we know to do, everything we believe to be right disintegrates before our eyes.  At the end of all we can do, all that is left is to surrender our self-sufficiency and beg for direction.  Can you believe that those times hold the greatest power, potential and hope?  At the end of ourselves, we reach the doorway of faith.  Indeed, faith IS the victory that overcomes the world.  With all my heart, I believe God allows trials so the miracle of faith can bloom in our lives.

As young parents, we asked those with adult children serving God to give us advice, to help us know what to do to ensure the same outcome.  They gave us the humble, ‘right’ answer:  “It’s all God.  Just do your best and trust Him.”    We understood in our heads the ‘rightness’ of their response—but peaceful, confidence in the outcome we so desperately desire demands faith along with our best efforts.  While they planted seeds of faith with their words, faith’s development requires time and experience that cannot be rushed.  We find it is extremely easy (and common) to be caught up in doing one’s best and totally forget to trust. Yet, our best is but filthy rags in the eternal economy and that is divine design.  Faith does not grow in a soil fertilized with self-sufficiency.

So, how do we learn to move beyond ourselves, to enter that doorway of faith?  How do we go from mental assent that God is in control to heart-confidence in His wisdom, power and goodness?  Simply put–we live and let life unfold.  We do everything we know to do and let life show us, our best will never be enough but Jesus never fails!  The trials of life—whether in parenting & family life, or career or health—help us understand that we are but created beings needing the Creator to bring life into our brokenness, our lacks and our dying souls.

When those times of trial come:

  • praise God for who He is…for His goodness, His power and His desire to deliver.
  • Release the end of the story to Him knowing His plans are always perfect.
  • Set your course by what will bring God the most glory.
  • Take the next step in faith by acting on the scriptural truth you know…and if you don’t know one, open your Bible or seek the wisdom of a godly friend.
  • Ask God to show you the most purely loving action available and do it!
  • Relax in the knowledge that if you choose a wrong step, He is bigger than every mistake.
  • Finally, watch for the miracles to unfurl.

The stretching times of life develop our faith…they bring the knowledge in our heads down into our hearts.  We learn more of the greatness of God by seeing our inadequacy.  As long as we maintain control and stay on the pre-planned path, there is no need for faith.  Christ said eternal life is this:  knowing the Father and one whom He sent.  (John 17:3)  We cannot know Him until our self-centered, self-impressed blind eyes see our need.  When we do know Him, the next step holds no fear.

 

 

About Billie Jo

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Billie Jo is wife to Craig and mom to Rusty and Riesa. Formerly employed in the human service industry, the past fifteen years have been dedicated to homeschooling. She is a freelance writer for a number of print and internet publications. She is also passionate about serving in the community. She works in a GED preparation ministry and a community-based servant program that provides opportunities for youth to serve others. It is passion for the love of Jesus and His transforming work that motivates her writing and serving. "I love to see God at work in the lives of others and this is the way I see best."

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2 comments

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    …so simple to say, so easy to hear, but so profoundly important to understand when you actually live it.

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      Nothing simple about it! Giving up control, dying to self…the work of the Divine. Struggle to let Him rule every day…and if that doesn’t show me what humility and meekness look like, nothing ever will. The GREAT Sovereign lets me take the reins; unbelievable that I struggle against His reign! Patience and forgiveness in that. Ah, how I love Him!

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