Thursday, July 05, 2007

Too Much Nudging?

In response to the appreciated anonymous comment on my previous post:

I know exactly how you feel when it comes to asking God for a glimpse (or a full set of plans) of what He has laid out for us. I am a fifty-year-old father of three (one still in high school), seeking to pay my bills, put some money away for retirement and have a significant impact on the world. Do I want my world turned upside-down? Am I really willing to ask God to really speak to me?

Then I think about Abraham, Moses, Paul, the Disciples and even contemporaries who heard from God and completely re-vamped their lives.

Yes, we all pray "Lord, I want to hear from you", but are any of us really willing to "hear" from Him? When Peter put his net out on the other side of the boat (deep water) after having fished all night and caught nothing, he was saying, "Whatever you have for me Lord, I choose to do it - even BEFORE I know what it is." Now to me that is faith: fishing in unknown water, listening to a carpenter tell him where the fish are, catching the fish and then giving it all up and following Jesus.

So if I nudge too much, I apologize. But I do hold my ground when I say pursue your dreams, ignite your passions, and get in on what God is doing, using the gifts He has given you.


Philip A. Guzman, Esq. said...

Amen, Brad. Add to your dreams each and every day, Brad. You are on a mission. . God's mission, my friend. Where He takes you just go with His flow! Do not -- no never-- be crushed down by the every day mundane routines and meetings that you, me and everyone else must endure. The Lord has so much more for us!

Brad Lewis said...

Thanks for your encouragement Phil. It helps to be reminded that my "mission" is more than the mundane, that my vision goes beyond the routine.

Anonymous said...

I thought it may be a good idea, "maybe", to look at the context of the Scripture passage that you used to discuss God speaking to us and whether or not we want to hear.

As much as you may want it to be about us and our response, it just isn't. "On one occasion, while the crowd was pressing in on him to hear the word of God, he was standing by the lake of Gennesaret, and he saw two boats by the lake, but the fishermen had gone out of them and were washing their nets. Getting into one of the boats, which was Simon's, he asked him to put out a little from the land. And he sat down and taught the people from the boat. And when he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, "Put out into the deep and let down your nets for a catch." And Simon answered, "Master, we toiled all night and took nothing! But at your word I will let down the nets." And when they had done this, they enclosed a large number of fish, and their nets were breaking. They signaled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both the boats, so that they began to sink. But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus' knees, saying, "Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord." For he and all who were with him were astonished at the catch of fish that they had taken, and so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. And Jesus said to Simon, "Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men." And when they had brought their boats to land, they left everything and followed him." (Luk 5:1-11)

Just notice a few things with me. First, Peter is not like "Hey, I want to hear you talk to me God so say something, okay?" He is using his boat as a platform from which Jesus can teach.

Second, Peter did not respond with "Whatever you have for me Lord, I choose to do it - even BEFORE I know what it is." Instead, he made excuses that whatever he was going to do was going to be futile since in his flesh he had already labored to produce a catch and had failed miserably. He did what Jesus said reluctantly.

Third, after the catch of fish, Peter did not congratulate himself on his newly found, creative, dream-chasing, mission-accomplishing, legacy-leaving faith. What he did do, according to Scripture, was to fall on his knees and acknowledge his own sinfulness in the presence of a holy, sovereign, nature-commanding, fish-school producing God. It is the same response in essence as that of Isaiah when he saw Christ's glory (cf. John 12:41) or Paul when he encountered Christ on the Damascus road, or anyone else who came face to face with the greatness of God. The story is not about Peter or any of us. The story is about Christ. It is all about Christ and the glory of God in the face of Christ for the enjoyment of all of the peoples.

The fact of the matter is, God has spoken. He has spoken in His absolute Word, He has spoken in the person of His Son, "but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high,"
(Heb 1:2-3). He has spoken through creation. He has spoken and if we refuse to hear or mishandle the message, we do so at our own eternal peril. That's food for thought.

Soli Deo Gloria,

Brad Lewis said...

Your insight is challenging and worth consideration. My premise for this posting was a response to my previous posting titled, "Old Friend, New Passion." Perhaps reading the post and the comment will put this post in a different perspective.

COVID Wreaks Havoc In India

  The situation in India is bleak, but the Kingdom of God is expanding... I know you have seen news reports of the huge increase of COVID ca...