In the moment…Just pondering…
Sitting at coffee this morning, I inadvertently overheard a conversation while working on a message…OK…I purposefully and intentionally listened in on the conversation. 😜 What drew me in, was one person describing how they were a “worshipper,” which of course, peeked my curiosity. I wanted to know what she meant—why was this identifying marker so important to her. On the side, let me say I always find it interesting to hear Christians describing their identity by their calling more than by their walk. But nonetheless… What she began to describe, though, was more about how she had left her last church and decided that she could “learn on her own for awhile.” Of course, hidden between the words was an offended spirit.
On the surface, nothing would normally seem to be out of order. We would all listen to her process as legitimate. People leave one church for another all the time. We all have the right to be led the way we desire, right? We all need a place where we can fully realize our identity, correct?
Certainly! But…we should not miss the fact that there all kinds of spiritual forces lurking in the background playing with our motives when we’re in this kind of mindset.
In moments like this, there’s a big issue that we can easily miss in our own pursuit of purpose. It’s the widespread issue of unbelief; which says to itself, “I don’t believe in what someone else is doing because they don’t believe in what I’m doing.” An awkward place to stand, to say the least!
What we need to understand though is that the challenge of believing God has little to do with believing for the supernatural or believing for God’s call in our lives. All people of faith believe that! True believing is exchanging my right to be right for an agenda greater than myself. Take a look at Jesus’ own experience. When Jesus showed up in His hometown, the people could not receive His teaching, so the Bible describes how Jesus subsequently “could not do many mighty works (miracles) there” because of their unbelief. What they already believed got in the way of what Jesus was saying.
This is where I find a troubling spirit in our world…and at times, even in the church…we’re moved more by our desire for personal power than by the truth of what God is doing. We’re looking for confirmation of what we know and believe rather than believing what God is doing in front of us. Now, I’m not speaking of loving a specific church, or honoring the person in the pulpit. I’m speaking of truly seeing God speaking and working in our midst regardless of my personal interests.
In the case of Jesus’ hometown, there was no power available for them because there was no willingness to embrace Jesus’ Words. They held their own belief close rather than Jesus’ truth. It wasn’t about believing God for the miracles Jesus could do, but believing in who He said He was.
At the end of the day, I wonder if the same is true for us. Is Jesus hindered in our own midst because we truly don’t believe what He’s saying or doing?
What do you all think?