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We Can Accept God’s Will WITHOUT Understanding

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Inquiring minds want to know. In many ways I am like a cat—wanting to know and understand everything! Curiosity is good—up to a point. Just ask a cat who’s lost 8 of his 9 lives!

Although science is making new discoveries everyday, “The more you know, the more you realize how much you don’t know.” Frustration, doubt, fear, or hesitancy to move forward can all be a result of a lack of comprehension. But there’s good news:

We don’t need to know and understand something in order to accept it.

I don’t understand gravity but I accept it, lest I walk off the roof of a building plummeting to my demise.

I don’t know why my wonderful husband, Ed, loved me, but I’m so glad he did! I accepted it willingly.

I don’t need to know why:

  • The sky is blue
  • I can see color
  • I can hear music

–to appreciate their beauty.

I don’t have to fully understand:

  • The Trinity
  • How Jesus was both God and man simultaneously
  • Many biblical doctrines

–to believe it as truth.

I don’t need to understand:

  • How God will work out a particular situation
  • How my faithful Lord will keep a promise
  • All the details of my future

–to step out in faith and obey.

I don’t have comprehend or like the fact that:

  • I was born to the parents I had
  • I am a widow
  • A particular person has sinned against me

–to accept it and not fight God.

And I certainly don’t need to understand Christ’s atoning work and resurrection, in order to receive His free gift of eternal life. I am so grateful for that, aren’t you?! 

I really don’t want to know and understand what Christ experienced on the cross! 

You and I don’t have to fully grasp this awesome work to get saved! It’s simply a child-like act of faith to believe and receive. God even gives us the faith to believe (Eph 2:8).

I said a minute ago that we don’t need to like something either in order to accept it. We must come to accept that God is God and we’re not. But understand this:

God is good and everything He does is good. God loves you and what He is doing is for your ultimate welfare. (see Ps 119:68; Rom 8:28)

Oftentimes though, we don’t see how a negative circumstance will work for our benefit right away. However, God wants us to live by faith, not by sight (that is, having all the knowledge and understanding we want). Instead, we can focus on what we do know for sure—that God loves us. Accepting this vital truth will help us accept things we don’t understand or like.

We have a choice…

We can kick and scream when we don’t understand something or don’t get our way—much like a child throwing a temper tantrum!

Or

We can assent to our kind, loving, and all-wise Father’s will with as little complaining as possible—or at least try!

The quicker we do that, the less disruption there is to our joy, peace, and usefulness for God’s purposes.

So my friends, go and seek knowledge, gain understanding. There is much you can know and understand about our transcendent God. The Holy Spirit will reveal to you what you need to understand and when. What you cannot grasp, accept and move ahead in faith.

Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. (Pr 3:5-6)

You can learn more about understanding God’s ways here:

God's way

THE HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®.  NIV®.  Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica.  All rights reserved worldwide. 

 

How to be More Patient – Part 2: Understanding Time and Purpose

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Many of us want to be more patient, but struggle to do it. What we’re lacking is the know-how.

The Bible says:

A man’s wisdom gives him patience…. (Pr 19:11)

A patient man has great understanding…. (Pr 14:29)

So what we need is wisdom and understanding, which is available to us! (See Pr 2:1-11)

Let’s start with getting the right perspective of time which is not the easiest thing to comprehend, but here are a few things we know for sure:

  • Time is constant on earth, although our perception of time changes.
  • We all have the same amount of time in a day.
  • God created (Gen 1:1) and controls time.
  • God is eternal (Gen 21:33) and exists outside the realm of time (2 Pet 3:8).
  • God knows the past, present and future (Rom 11:33).
  • Life is fleeting (Ps 39:4; Jas 4:14).
  • In relation to eternity our lifespan is but a minuscule blip on its screen.

Although most of us value this limited commodity of time, we waste so much of it! We let the urgent “gotta do’s” crowd out the important. We do what’s at hand at the expense of the long-term important things—like our relationships with loved ones and God. Relationships require quality time to develop and maintain.

Oh, how often I have allowed “pressing” matters to interfere with spending undivided attention with my Lord and Savior! I lost out on many special moments of intimacy—and so did God!

We need to view time differently if we want to be more productive for the Lord and live a less stressful life!

I propose we invest time instead of spend it.

When you spend money it is gone. When you invest it, assets multiply.

Spending time implies that it goes by unproductively and uselessly. Investing time produces something for the future and/or for a worthwhile purpose.

We need to manage our time wisely just like we need to manage our money wisely. And the only way to do that is to place our time under God’s management. Consulting with God (=praying) will lead us to wisely use our time instead of just spending it.

This leads us to the fact that if we want to become more patient, we must know what our God-given purpose is. We are here for His purposes, His glory—not our own. (Eccl 12:13) When we get that straight, a lot of anxiety and frustration melt away. And you can know what God’s purpose is for you. (Visit the blog series on How to Know God’s Will for help.)

Tony Evans says that time and purpose are connected.

“If you don’t have a purpose, you will not use time wisely. You will waste it…abuse it…misuse it…and not learn from it.”1

By having your godly purpose in mind, you will not piddle away so much of your precious time. You will be more focused and therefore more efficient, producing lasting fruit for the Kingdom of God.

Some of the practical things you can do is to look at your schedule and evaluate it in light of eternity and your God-given purpose.3

This life is not all there is. Developing an eternal perspective was a life-saver for me in the sea of grief as a widow. Instead of wasting what time I have left on earth with self-pity or self-gratification to ease my pain, I strive to use it for God’s purposes. The result has been a greater sense of significance and a strong conviction that God’s way is indeed worth it!

Show me, O LORD, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting is my life. (Ps 39:4)

For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do..  (Eph 2:10)

So until next time, my friends, invest your limited time toward your God-given purpose and you’ll be sure to develop more patience.

~~~~~

1. See How to Control Your Emotions God’s Way for more help in dealing with your feelings. 

2. Tony Evans. The Urban Alternative Radio. WAVA. Arlington. Feb. 2013.

3. See my book From the Vertical to the Horizontal chapter 8 for a list of questions you could ask.

Scripture taken from THE HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®.  NIV®.  Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica.  All rights reserved worldwide.

Understanding isn’t a Requirement for Accepting

Free Download

Inquiring minds want to know. In many ways I am like a cat—wanting to know and understand everything! Curiosity is good—up to a point. Just ask a cat who’s lost 8 of his 9 lives!

Although science is making new discoveries everyday, “The more you know, the more you realize how much you don’t know.” Frustration, doubt, fear, or hesitancy to move forward can all be a result of a lack of comprehension. But there’s good news:

We don’t need to know and understand something in order to accept it.

I don’t understand gravity but I accept it, lest I walk off the roof of a building plummeting to my demise.

I don’t know why my wonderful husband, Ed, loved me, but I’m so glad he did! I accepted it willingly.

I don’t need to know why:

  • The sky is blue
  • I can see color
  • I can hear music

–to appreciate their beauty.

I don’t have to fully understand:

  • The Trinity
  • How Jesus was both God and man simultaneously
  • Many biblical doctrines

–to believe it as truth.

I don’t need to understand:

  • How God will work out a particular situation
  • How my faithful Lord will keep a promise
  • All the details of my future

–to step out in faith and obey.

I don’t have comprehend or like the fact that:

  • I was born to the parents I had
  • I am a widow
  • A particular person has sinned against me

–to accept it and not fight God.

And I certainly don’t need to understand Christ’s atoning work and resurrection, in order to receive His free gift of eternal life. I am so grateful for that, aren’t you?! 

I really don’t want to know and understand what Christ experienced on the cross! 

You and I don’t have to wait to wholly grasp this awesome work to get saved! It’s simply a child-like act of faith to believe and receive. God even gives us the faith to believe (Eph 2:8).

I said a minute ago that we don’t need to like something either in order to accept it. We must come to accept that God is God and we’re not. But understand this:

God is good and everything He does is good. God loves you and what He is doing is for your ultimate welfare. (see Ps 119:68; Rom 8:28)

Often we just don’t see that right away. God wants us to live by faith, not by sight (=knowledge and understanding). Knowing that He loves us helps to accept the mysteries of life.

We could kick and scream when we don’t understand something or don’t get our way—much like a child throwing a temper tantrum!

Or

We can quickly assent to His sovereign control, and do so with joy, or at least try not to complain.

The quicker we do that, the less disruption there is to our joy, peace, and usefulness for God’s purposes.

Go and seek knowledge; gain understanding. God will reveal to you what you need to understand and when. We can know many things—even about our transcendent God.

What you cannot grasp, accept and move ahead in faith.

Trust in the LORD with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding; 

in all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make your paths straight.
(Pr 3:5-6)

 

THE HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®.  NIV®.  Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by Biblica.  All rights reserved worldwide. 

 

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