Have you ever wanted something so bad you could just taste it? Boy, I have! I just KNEW it was the right thing to do, and I was bound and determined it was going to be mine! After all, I worked hard, I prayed hard, and I just knew this particular “idea” was my answer!
Have you been there too? Please tell me you have! In those seasons of life where I thought I knew what was best, I would go to God in prayer and thank Him for the great idea. I would make suggestions on how we could make it work, how we could afford it. I would tell God that He was doing an awesome job, but if He would be so kind as to just work this or that out, or change someone’s mind, etc., etc…..Yep, I am being completely honest here when I tell you I have been guilty of telling God how to do His job.
The good news is that He loves me anyway, and like any good and wise Father, He doesn’t always heed those suggestions I make. He is the one who knows what is best. So even though it was something I just KNEW was right, there was stumbling block after stumbling block. Detour after detour. Have you heard the old saying, “Work like it depends on you, pray like it depends on God”? Well, I was working hard for it, I just forgot the second part. I would pray, but instead of seeking wisdom and discernment, instead of listening, I was offering suggestion on how we could make it work! Geez, I just have to shake my head at myself sometimes!
Proverbs 16:9 says, “A man’s heart plans his way, But the Lord directs his steps.” And thank God for that! Can I get an Amen?! I truly am thankful God doesn’t always listen to my suggestions! Looking back at my life, I find that when it feels like I am “trying to force a square peg into a round hole”, as a good man in my life likes to say, that is God just protecting me from…well, me. I make big plans, but luckily, God directs my steps. Sometimes those road blocks are His big red flag waving at me and warning me to hold up and listen to Him, because He always has something better to give me!
I just finished a Bible study on the book of Proverbs. There is a lot of good stuff in there, but the above verse is one of my favorites. This season of Lent (the 40 days of heart-preparation before Easter), I am working on listening more and suggesting less. I am focusing on being thankful for unanswered prayers from my past and for blessings that I never even imagined, much less suggested. God wants a relationship with us. He wants to hear us and for us to hear Him. He wants to love on us and give to us. But we have to get out of our own way!
I pray that this season of Lent that all of us lean in a little closer to God and listen to what He wants to tell us. It is a loud world out there, friends. Tune your ears to hear His voice and watch how your life is transformed!
God bless, Allison Key, MD