"Now may the Lord of peace Himself give you peace at all times and in every way.
The Lord be with all of you."
2 Thessalonians 3:16I've heard people say there's no more miserable creature on earth than the believer who's out of God's Will - and from what I've experienced and seen in others, I believe it. Unsaved people can float through life living for themselves because they don't know what they're missing: they've never experienced the mountaintop of oneness with God. However, as believers we've waded into His still, clear waters of Peace, tasted His Goodness, rested in the vastness of His Faithfulness, bathed in His Mercy, and babbled our gratitude for His Grace. In the beginning, Adam and Eve walked in the Garden with God, putting Him first and hiding nothing. That's peace. Their misery began when they moved their trust from God to someone else, disobeyed God's command to put their desires first, and broke the trust He had put in them to walk with Him and enjoy His free gifts of life in a sinless world.
How do we find our way back to the peace of Walking with God in the garden?
1) Trust God first and only.
"Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight."
Proverbs 3:5-6When we let this top priority slip from the first and foremost position by listening to other people instead of seeking God, we're in for a life of disappointment and disobedience. No man, no woman, no preacher or teacher, no well-meaning loved one, and no spiritually charismatic personality who seems to have it all can be trusted to be right all the time about everything. We're dead wrong to expect perfection, or even personal direction, from people. Only God can live up to that tall order and my daily, moment-by-moment walk with Him builds my trust in Him as I see Him work in every area of my life.
"I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
I will counsel you and watch over you."
Psalm 32:82) Seek God's Will first.
"But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness,
and all these things will be given to you as well."
"Then He said, 'Here I am, I have come to do Your will."
Hebrews 10:9I've found immense freedom in realizing I don't have to figure out new ways to serve God and He doesn't call me to accept every open position someone asks me to fill. He's the Brain and He equips and uses me to carry out the part of His Plan He calls me to fill. Many believers wear themselves out by assuming too many projects for God while others never serve Him because they feel ill-equipped or because doing God's Will isn't "convenient." Neither approach has much to do with God. Putting His Will first means letting Him lead us to serve in specific ways He knows will transform our character and hone our gifts.
3) Allow God to live through me.
"Like newborn babies, crave spiritual milk,
so that by it you may grow up in your salvation,
now that you have tasted that the Lord is good."
1 Peter 2:2
"He must become greater; I must become less."
John 3:30God calls me to nurture my personal relationship with Him to the point that He is Who people see in me. He moved into my life at my invitation and He's trusting me to make Him at home. He's not a temporary guest; He's the new owner. No one else can plan my life or make my decisions for me. No one else can feed or satisfy me spiritually. I become less and He becomes more. He reveals Himself through me in unique and rewarding ways. His love for me makes this the best possible and most peace producing arrangement.
Sovereign Lord You deserve nothing less than to be first and foremost in our hearts and lives. Your Love for us is enough to earn our complete trust in You. Your Goodness defies explanation. May we willingly set aside our own agendas to walk with You and to respect You enough to hide nothing from Your all-seeing Eyes.
In the Name of Jesus Who revealed why You alone are worthy to be First and Foremost!
Inspired by My Utmost for His Highest and Jesus Calling
photo from the family album