Sunday, July 29, 2012

Our goal(s) with God vs. God's goal with us - Part I

Today, the wordly philosophy has taken over Christianity more than ever, I believe. There are so many great philosphers and writers who said or say basically great things that sometimes even sound like a verse from the Bible. Personally I could say I like those a lot, too. But when taken a closer look, the biblical request for us and what God's plan is with and for us is slightly twisted. The danger is (and the devil knows that well!) if you take the truth and twist it just a tiny bit, the result will be far away from the intended goal. Just think of archery. If you have your arrow pointed only a millimeter to the side, you'll never hit the bull's eye. It may be close. But we won't get the prize.

This morning I read a devotional about obedience. (This is also a very unpopular word/mindset; you may find it only in the military, I think. Someone tells you something and you immediately do it without questioning the request. Everywhere else we are trained to challenge everything and to develop a unique opinion, view or argument. It's also a huge part of the so called individualism. "Find your true self.", "Believe in yourself.", "Don't let others judge you for being yourself." But I'm letting the mind wander.)
While reading the devotional I was thinking about what we usually hear and what I'm striving for:
* to love more
* to be more patient
* to sum it up just be a better Christian
* to grow closer to the Lord
* to be more Christ-like
* "to be continued"...
If you can relate yourself to that listing, I'd say we found some of "our goals with God".

I then realized those are all noble aims, but they all lie ahead and in the future because yet, I'm far away from those. But God's goal with us is *now*, right in this moment you are reading this. But at this point, I want Oswald Chambers to continue. He put it so much better than I ever could:
He made His disciples get into the boat
and go before Him to the other side . . . —Mark 6:45
We tend to think that if Jesus Christ compels us to do something and we are obedient to Him, He will lead us to great success. We should never have the thought that our dreams of success are God’s purpose for us. In fact, His purpose may be exactly the opposite. We have the idea that God is leading us toward a particular end or a desired goal, but He is not. The question of whether or not we arrive at a particular goal is of little importance, and reaching it becomes merely an episode along the way. What we see as only the process of reaching a particular end, God sees as the goal itself.
What is my vision of God’s purpose for me? Whatever it may be, His purpose is for me to depend on Him and on His power now. If I can stay calm, faithful, and unconfused while in the middle of the turmoil of life, the goal of the purpose of God is being accomplished in me. God is not working toward a particular finish— His purpose is the process itself. What He desires for me is that I see “Him walking on the sea” with no shore, no success, nor goal in sight, but simply having the absolute certainty that everything is all right because I see “Him walking on the sea” (Mark 6:49). It is the process, not the outcome, that is glorifying to God. God’s training is for now, not later. His purpose is for this very minute, not for sometime in the future. We have nothing to do with what will follow our obedience, and we are wrong to concern ourselves with it. What people call preparation, God sees as the goal itself. God’s purpose is to enable me to see that He can walk on the storms of my life right now. If we have a further goal in mind, we are not paying enough attention to the present time. However, if we realize that moment-by-moment obedience is the goal, then each moment as it comes is precious.

1 comment:

Esther Neumann said...

That's exactly what I thought. And, why worry about how I will be or what I will do if I can't even "control my tongue" (for example) this very second. That's just big enough of a task right there! Like I said to Scharon "why become anxious to bring Chinese, Arabians or Peruvians to Christ if we can't even bring our immediate family closer to Christ". Our task and goal is NOW. And it's a very big and important one. So big and important that we are already overwhelmed by it.