The God Box

So many times we ask for what we think we need, instead of asking for God’s will for us. How often do we say: “God, either I need you to do this…, or this?..” Such an approach leaves no room for there to be an entirely different way that God could provide for our needs.


I know I have done this. Once I was faced with a very challenging situation with my sister; we couldn’t see eye-to-eye on something and it was damaging our relationship. I just couldn’t see a solution. I said: “God either you change my heart, or hers, because this just isn’t working.” From my limited perspective I could only see two solutions, but we serve a mighty God that must smile at our feeble attempts to explain our needs. He answered in a way that left me in awe. He did both. Two hearts were changed and a relationship was restored.


God isn’t boxed in by our solutions, yet how often do we try to put him there? He is so much bigger and greater than we can even imagine and He wants to do so much more than we ever ask for.


In Matthew 6 Jesus taught His disciples to pray: “Your will be done.” Simple, direct, submissive. This type of humility was something that would help them accomplish the work that was before them. A work they would not always understand and a work they could not do in their own strength. The same is true for us today. God has a special work for us to do that will be hindered or lost in our unwillingness to be fully lead by Him.


When Jesus was in the Garden of Gethsemane, He prayed: “not as I will, but as You will. ” In the oppressive darkness that enveloped Him, and in the midst of the most challenging night anyone has ever faced, Jesus responded in a manner that had become His habit. Had He relied on His own strength, He wouldn’t have made it to see the morning light. I cannot even imagine what it would be like to be under the horrifying weight and guilt of the sins of the entire history of the world. Even a moment of that would surely crush you. But Jesus had learned to go to that secret place (as is spoken of in Psalm 91), and to commune with God in a constant, life-sustaining way. His sacrifice brought us life.


In what ways are you learning to make God your refuge? Do you put God in a box? Are you focused on your needs, or on God’s great ability to supply for your every need? Let us dwell on the matchless love of One who came here to die for us so that we might live.

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