Finding Peace in Congestion
Life for many of us today is filled with stop and go traffic, sitting an waiting to move, proceeding on a perceived course that is provided by an electronic guidance device that says we are to arrive at our destination at a specified time.
It might seem hard to believe but there is peace in there for us!
Note from Kip,
Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart be courageous. Wait for the Lord.
Psalms 27:14 (CSB)
Maybe it is all about how we use our time.
We tend to pack too much activity into our limited time. We dictate our lives by schedules, appointment, and deadlines. The very thought of catching up is a bit foreign to us because there is no slack in the timeline we have established for ourselves.
There comes a time when God simply says ‘STOP’. Then what happens to our precious calendar?
We want to be good servants of the Lord but it’s important that we don’t take what we are doing so serious that we forget why we are doing it.
After these things God tested Abraham and said to him, “Abraham! ”
“Here I am,” he answered.
“Take your son,” he said, “your only son Isaac, whom you love, go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains I will tell you about.”
Genesis 22:1-2 (CSB)
Excuse me, Lord? Do what? This might have entered my mind if I were Abraham and indeed that may have been exactly what Abraham thought as well.
You know the rest of the story relatively well. Early in the morning, Abraham gets up, packs supplies, his son Issac, and some servants and off to the mountains he goes in obedience.
He could have plotted out the course, the costs, and the time it would take to accomplish this goal but he didn’t. He simply got up and left to go do what he had been told.
Interestingly enough, he didn’t even have the specifics of a destination, that would render any GPS unit pretty much worthless. We must enter a destination.
But God doesn’t always position us in that manner. “go to the land of Moriah“, God told Abraham. So he did have a destination of sorts. However, God made it clear that that was more of the general vicinity that he wanted his servant, specifics would follow.
So, we see that God has a clear plan here, go to Moriah, find a mountain yet to be specified, and sacrifice your child. Got it!
Not so fast!
God sought to position Abraham in Moriah, on a specific mountain, for a specified purpose.
As the story goes, they locate the mountain, Abraham takes Issac up the mountain leaving the servants behind an tells them ‘We will return’. We! Not, “I will be back”, but instead we will return.
Obviously, Abraham had faith that God was going to do something, but he didn’t know what. He understood the nature of God and the relationship they had. While he didn’t know how this was going to come out, He knew who was in control and that the outcome whatever it was would be honoring to God and ‘We will return’.
All Abraham really knew clearly was that this was the place he had been directed to so that he might be there at that location at that specific time, and God had told him what he was to be prepared to do. He had done all of that up to this point and so was ‘positioned’ where God wished him to be.
Abraham possessed faith and trust in God’s favor with him so he said the only thing that he could think of based on the information he had acquired from the instructions and his experience with the Lord dealing with him, ‘We will return’.
If Family Services had been aware of this ‘position’ Abraham had Issac they would have taken the boy into protective custody immediately and locked Abraham up in the loony bin till he regained sanity and could face trial for child endangerment.
But they didn’t, they were positioned where God wanted them, and Abraham had faith in God that whatever he was instructed to do, needed to be done exactly as God had instructed. He understood that God likely had not shared everything that was to take place here, but whatever it was it would be for God’s glory and ultimately good for Abraham and his son Issac. They were positioned.
The rest of the story you know. God provided an alternative sacrifice that reflected the sacrifice that would be provided by God for us, the Lamb of God.
God was more interested in Abraham being obedient and being positioned where God wanted him to be than completing the task God sent him to accomplish.
That paragraph above is critical for us to understand and constantly maintain in our minds.
God’s not nearly as interested in us doing exactly what He’s called us to, as long as we are being obedient to His direction in doing so. He may well intend for us to accomplish the tasks He places before us, but then again He may be just positioning us for another purpose totally different than He spelled out for us at first.
That initial mission may have just been the positioning God required to set the stage for Him to use us to accomplish His real objective. An objective that we may or may not be privy to at the time.
And whoever doesn’t take up his cross and follow me is not worthy of me.
Matthew 10:38 (CSB)
Who would have thought that God was positioning Abraham to demonstrate his faithfulness to God and the extent to which God would provide a sacrifice for our redemption? I’m pretty certain that Abraham didn’t, but he was obedient and had the faith of his convictions to carry out what God instructed him to do, UNTIL, God used the situation He had positioned Abraham and Issac into in order to demonstrate His provision for us.
So as you sit at the light and the GPS recalculates your arrival time, consider that in this congestion of our lives, that God is actively pursuing a plan for us and putting us in the very position to serve and honor Him.
It’s not about where we are, how we got there or where we think he’s directed us to go or do. What is more important is where He has positioned us right now today at this very moment.
We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.
Romans 8:28 (CSB)
God will not always tell us all that we need to program our route into our GPS. He doesn’t want us to depend on our electronic positioning system to get to the place where He wants to use us. He very well could do exactly that but more often He positions us where He wants us giving us the opportunity to do what He wants us to do when He wants us to do it, regardless if that is stopped at a traffic light, or making disciples of all nations teaching them to obey Him.
The important elements are our obedience to His direction, and being in the position He wants us to be, doing what He calls us to do. If we do this, we will find peace in the congestion of our lives, because our destination for today, is right where He’s positioned us!