by paul hoffmaster
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Over the years, I have experienced Godís promptings to pursue a certain direction. Upon hearing the verb, I would eagerly wait for the noun. What usually followed would be a long pause of anticipation; after all, if God wanted me to pursue a certain direction should He not tell where I am going and what to expect on my journey? I have always had the tendency to want to get more information from God than is necessary. It seemed the more knowledge I acquired limited the amount of faith that I needed. Maybe God chooses not to reveal the total picture because we will try to help, and even influence, what road we should take to the destination. In our daily walk, God wants us to learn to walk by faith, not by reason and sight. He wants our faith to grow from a dependence upon our own decisions to a faith that sees God in all aspects of our life. Getting to where God desires us to be can be just as rewarding as the destination itself. The road of walking in His will is both satisfying and edifying, even when we donít know where the road will take us. The one thing we do know is that God is in control.
One day, God told Abram to leave Haran and go to a land that He would show him. He did not tell him where he was going, just that he was to pack up and head south. God told him that He was going to use him in a mighty way. (Gen. 12:2, 3) Abram did not ask for clarification. The Bible states that he simply ďdeparted.Ē (v.4) That is what faith is all about. Faith is not leaning on our own understanding, but acknowledging Him as He directs our path. (Prov.3:5, 6) As Abram traveled, he continually built altars, which were symbolic of worship and praise. Can we not raise our hands in surrender and praise as we walk by faith to the place where Godís wants us?
Not all journeys are void of challenges and set backs. (A set back is just a set up for us to learn more of Godís ways.) When Abram experienced a famine, he decided on his own to head to a land of plenty (Egypt). There, through the use of deception, he tricked Pharaoh into committing the error of taking Sarai as one of his wives. Abram became rich because of his treachery, for Pharaoh treated him well for Saraiís sake. Pharaoh finally realized that Sarai was really Abramís wife. He expelled Abram from Egypt and allowed him to take the riches which he had given him. (Gen. 12:10-19) Abram returned to where he built the first altar, and there he called on the name of the Lord. There he stood before God with the fruits of his deception (wealth). Those riches would cause a rift between Abram and Lot and their eventual separating of ways. (Gen. 13:1-13)
I have learned over the years to take one step at a time, one day a week, one month a year. When I try to anticipate Godís intent for my life, I have a tendency to trip, stumble, and fall. I think I see where God is taking me, but through my impatience and attempting to take short cuts, I end up in ďEgypt.Ē May our spiritual lives be like driving a car at night, not knowing what is beyond our headlights other than a destination that God has planned for us.
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