The sword sits on a specially designed table in my office. It reminds me of who I am; where I come from; and where I’m going—that in life, God designed me with all ability to fight for every new level of my story…for myself and for others.
If God has taught me anything, it is to accept the battles we face, both within and without, and to truly learn from them.
One of the greatest struggles that we all face comes in the form of a daily question: “How do you turn your “want to’s” into real joyful action—into a doable lifestyle lived out of sincere passion?”
The whole point of this “Journey 2018” has been to connect with who we really are and what we’ve been given to accomplish by our heavenly Father. Jesus came to give us life, and not only that, but “abundant life”—a life unhindered and with the special advantage of His presence. Unfortunately, and sometimes depressingly, we have to fight through this fog of what we don’t want to do to get into the flow of a real and divinely ordained story.
So, what to do?
First, God has led me to the unsettling revelation that much of our living doesn’t require much out of us…and this is where our battle begins. We don’t have to do anything we don’t want to do. Everything is an option. In our current society in particular, we can put-off, for a long time, what’s required of us. Sure…we have to work…we have to build and maintain a home…but after that, there’s plenty of distraction, entertainment, electronic devices, etc. to steal from our real identity.
Haven’t you noticed yourself that it’s easy to lose our days to the easy road?
Second, there also exists a spiritual battle that most of us face without even knowing it. We often make our destiny a test of God—to see whether or not our faithful choices will produce what we expect. So, we’ll try doing the right thing for a little while; but if we don’t see immediate benefit or results, then it’s easy to return to our previous lifestyle.
How can I be expected to do the right thing, if there is no immediate results? Right?
So…again…here are the two big problems in more down to earth terms:
- I simply don’t want to do what I don’t want to do.
- God seems to take too long to work.
I know that may sound humorous, but it’s true. The spiritual problem is that simple.
In our struggle, a solution from scripture comes to mind, “Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice.” (1 Samuel 15:22, ESV) Upon first examination, the idea of submission doesn’t seem to help. We don’t like the term. Submission is not an endearing term. It’s a hard word. It doesn’t fit the softness of our current culture. It doesn’t create visions of mountain scenes and tranquil waters. Instead, it sounds like I’m about to be made to eat liver and onions against my will.
Unfortunately, we don’t like it because we don’t understand it. We don’t really comprehend the joy in it. We actually see submission as another “have to.” But in truth, submission is not a “have to;” it’s an opportunity.
Submission says that what God is doing in front me is far more preferable than what I’m doing in my own world. Because God loves me, He has a vision that will open me up to my best life. You have a choice. Submission is simply a change in perspective—a change in what I trust.
This is why God says that submission is better than sacrifice. Sacrifice, on the other hand, is a test, it’s religious—if I do action A, then I’ll get result B. But…what happens when I don’t see result B, I eventually stop doing A; and then we lose our motivation. Instead, in submission, we always win. Yielding to a greater cause ultimately produces greater results. It takes me not only to where I need to go, but to the place of my divine assignment. Again, as I’ve said before, we just have to believe it.
Keep in mind, though, that submission is not simply obeying a bunch of random commands I find in scripture to get the results I desire—again, that’s religion. Submission says, I believe God has a plan. He loves me. Therefore, I choose to be part of a creatively unfolding divine story.
So…let’s believe the “road less travelled” is not really the harder road; that’s what your enemy wants you to believe. It really is the road of greatest joy because it’s the road you really want to be on anyways!