Thursday, January 24, 2013

Believe and Follow His Lead

I don't know what has captured your attention of late, but I spent a good part of last year on an in-depth study on the book of James.  Oh my what a challenge!!!  I was barely into it, when I began to have "Ah ha" moments and conviction handed to me in equal measure.

One portion in particular jumped out at me regarding being double-minded.  If you are an old church girl like me, you grew up hearing not only that phrase, but these very verses in James 1:6-8

"But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the seas, blown and tossed by the wind.  That man should not think he will receive anything form the Lord; he is a double-minded man unstable in all he does."

Throughout my life, I have hated the thought of being considered unstable and have done much to prove through my actions that I am as solid as they come.  However, in the same manner in which I occasionally risk gazing into a 10x magnification mirror to assess enlarging pores, and more recently my aging skin, (ugh!) I risked the same up close assessment of my own heart and found some areas that clearly need treatment.

As I worked through the study, a few sentences from my lesson cut me to the quick, "Faith receives more than it asks.  Doubt loses more than it disbelieved." (Whoa!!) We are double-minded or as interpreted in the King James double-HEARTED if, when we go to God, we don't hold fast in faith that He will give us exactly the wisdom we are in need of.

Though all of this seems pretty simple, the biggest "AH-HA" that grabbed me was just how often I gravitate towards human leadership while remaining oblivious to the fact that I was bypassing the leadership of the Holy Spirit.  I am in no way implying that human leadership is a negative, it's not.  It's just that in the manner of first things first, why wouldn't I seek the wisdom / leadership of God before any other?  After all, it's available with nothing more than a simple request!    

Man did I feel foolish, and yet in James, this is also penned, "without finding fault."  God not only generously gives me wisdom when I ask, but He goes so far as to say that He will give it without making me feel foolish for not coming to Him first.  Now that is what I call giving generously.  How amazing that only God in His wisdom, has the ability to remove obstacles like shame, embarrassment or feeling foolish before they even has the chance to get in the way.  If He doesn't find fault...neither should I.  

So how bout it?  Would you like to join me in making a change?  I'm making a commitment to ask God differently.... with expectancy and complete certainty.

(Check out the Beth Moore "James" study for a more in-depth look on this topic.)