Sometimes, I subconsciously think of God as my backup in whatever I’m endeavoring to do; yet I fail to check in with the Almighty. What I’m doing is taking him for granted, presuming he’ll be there to bless my effort, picking up the mislaid and missing pieces—my lack of planning, my failure to confirm that other people vital to completion of the project are available and willing to help, the lack of money, on and on.
It may be a worthy objective but have I asked the Lord if it’s what I should be doing right then? The more power and influence we have, the more harmful and dangerous our impulses (whims?) can be.
My whole life changed when I became a dad for the first time. I felt that was one of the greatest things that had ever happened to me. Still do. But my wife and I couldn’t commit to a weekend at the beach or even coffee time with friends without first considering baby Allison—her health, how much sleep she’d had, when she needed to be fed, if it was too cold/hot outside. Even how much sleep my wife had had the night before. So with my expanded role came increased responsibilities.
It was an entirely new ball game, with a whole set of new rules.
Yet it’s not just in new roles that we must be circumspect; it’s in all of life, particularly after we receive Christ into our lives. Yes, we are Christians and we belong to the family of God. Yes, he will help us get through each day; he will strengthen us so we can grow and prevail in our struggles, but he will not necessarily keep us comfortable and out of difficulty.
Life doesn’t work that way. There’s some truth to Woody Allen’s quote: “Eighty percent of success is just showing up,” but that’s not the whole story. A friend observed that some people think they are doing all they’re supposed to do for the Lord by just showing up at church on Sunday. God speaks to that cavalier attitude in Psalm 50:
“… you thought I was altogether like you. But I will rebuke you and accuse you to your face.”
It’s a new ball game, folks.
What expectations upon your life changed when you were given … assigned … accepted … undertook a new role? Dadhood? Manager? Commander? Leader? Wife? Follower of Christ?
Did you realize you had been anointed with that new position/role? Look around you—closely now—and consider if that child, parent, pastor, friend is expecting something from you. There’ll be more expected than just showing up.
Listen for God’s voice. To you. He’s not just like you and me.