Proverbs in Light of the Cross: Do I Really Need to Know God’s Will For My Life?

I am writing from the beautiful Tampa Bay area.

I am writing today from the beautiful Tampa Bay area.

The Lord directs our steps, so why try to understand everything along the way?  Proverbs 20:24 NLT
While many people ask why God does not show them His will for their lives I have come to a simple conclusion. He does not need to.

He hath showed thee, O man, what [is] good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?  Micah 6:8

 

Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. 

In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.  Proverbs 3:5-6

 

Every fall as recent high school graduates start choosing their college classes, I hear the question, “What does God want me to do with my life?”  Regardless if someone is planning on college or going straight into the workforce I sometimes hear people saying, “I wish God would tell me what He wants me to do.”

 

Even as we get older we often wish we had a direct phone line to God to get specific directions on which road to take in life. So why doesn’t God give us specific directions? It is not very complicated but actually very simple. God can work out His plan for our lives without ever telling us what it is. Maybe it’s best that God not spell out for us the future as we often would like. When Jesus met Peter He simply bade him “come and follow me.” Suppose Jesus had spelled it all out for him from the start. Suppose at the very beginning He had told Peter, “Come follow me and you will suffer public humiliation by denying me, and then end up being crucified upside down on a cross.” Peter would have run away! After Jesus’ resurrection Jesus gave Peter a hint as to what would happen, yet only gave Peter the little information Peter needed for that time. Peter simply followed Jesus day by day and once Peter’s life was over it was a wonderful testimony extolling the great power and love of God.

 

As I look back on my life, I can see how God has worked out His plan for my life without telling me what was going on. In my early twenties I was delivering business forms. I started dating a young lady who went to a small church near where I lived. To get closer to her I left the larger SDA church I had grown up in and joined her little SDA church. Things did not work out for us romantically and she moved away. For some reason I was too proud to admit that I had changed churches just for her so I stayed in that little church. Not long after that, a couple of new Literature Evangelists became a part of our church. They persuaded me to become an L.E. Then came a pastor to that small church who wanted a Bible Worker. The church hired me as the Bible Worker. When the pastor moved to Texas he invited me to go to Texas with him where I did Bible work there. After having been a Bible Worker for several years in Texas, a friend from church who worked at UPS invited me to go to work there to help supplement my income. Good thing I did because right after I went to UPS the churches I was doing Bible work for could no longer afford to pay my salary. So UPS became my regular job for a few years.

 

In 2004 my sister in Tennessee had heard about an available Bible Worker position in Tampa. I thought I had been rooted in Texas. I sent my resume to the church in Tampa and even though I thought I would never leave Texas. One thing after another worked out for me to come to Tampa. I love my job. I love my church family here, and of course I love the area! More importantly others feel God is using me here as His humble Christian servant.

 

While many people my age glory in their past, I tell people the current few years of my life have been the best years of my life. Looking back now, I can trace how God lead me here, beginning with a small church in Oklahoma that I was attending even though the reason for me going there was no longer there. God used that small church to help me start my ministry and get to the beautiful place I am today.

 

I find it interesting that I have never really had to find a job. They all have found me. Even the delivery job I had was presented to me, I did not find it. The L.E. position, Bible worker jobs, and even UPS were all offered to me. God has worked out every aspect of my life and for the most part without telling me at all what was going on or what His plan was.

 

So if you don’t know God’s plan for your life, I say “Don’t worry about it.” God knows and He can make it all work out without telling us at all what is going on. Jesus tells us in the Sermon on the Mount not to worry about tomorrow. He can turn our lives into something beautiful if we will only, do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with thy God.”  Micah 6:8 

Luke 13; Why Do Good Things Happen To Bad People?

I am writing today from the beautiful Tampa Bay area.

Luke 13:1There were present at that season some that told him of the Galilaeans, whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. 

 13:2       And Jesus answering said unto them, Suppose ye that these Galilaeans were sinners above all the Galilaeans, because they suffered such things? 

 13:3       I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. 

 13:4       Or those eighteen, upon whom the tower in Siloam fell, and slew them, think ye that they were sinners above all men that dwelt in Jerusalem? 

 13:5       I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. 

The disciples, like many today, had a hard time rationalizing how such tragic events could happen. For some reason, to some people, it just makes it easier to deal with if we think the victims somehow deserved it. In John 9, the disciples ask if the blind man had sinned or his parents. They wanted to justify the man’s blindness by rationalizing that it was somehow deserved. Jesus said neither had sinned.

Many people can’t wait to get to heaven and ask God why all these things are allowed to happen. I think they are going to be quite surprised when God turns the table and asks us why it happened! Not everything that happens is God’s plan or His will. That is another myth. While people blame God for everything, they are going to be surprised to find out, that He is not the micro managing control freak they think He is. All things work together for good to those who love the Lord, but that does not mean God wanted all the things to happen that have happened.

 For example, I always hear people saying, that whoever is in leadership was put there by God. Really? In Hosea 8, God tells Israel that they set up kings and He knew it not and had nothing to do with it! Still, God is in control, true, but things still happen all the time that are not God’s idea.

A while back I was talking with a police officer friend of mine, who was very distressed over two of his fellow officers being shot and killed by a suspect. He said none of it makes sense to him now, but one day God will explain and it will all make sense. I told my friend that none of it makes sense to God either! It was not His idea. It was not God’s plan.

 Sin was never God’s plan but yet He has a plan to save us from sin. In the meantime while His plan is being worked out by His grace, let’s focus on His love and mercy and not try to pacify ourselves that people deserve all the bad that comes their way. Let’s remember too, that Jesus is a personal savior and allows different trials to different people. For example, I know some people who are very angry at God for allowing the WTC buildings to get hit by planes. At the same time, I have heard stories about some of the victims calling and leaving messages with their loved ones, telling them not worry because they would see them in heaven. So whether or not God should have allowed that to happen is between them and God, and I as a third party don’t need to be judging God, based on something that is between He and them and not me.

 I know I am not even scraping the surface of a very complex issue here, but all I am saying is, that if a terrorist victim can die at peace with God, then why would I, a person who was not even involved, be condemning God for it?

Many people ask, and books have been written on why bad things happen to good people. It’s all a waste of time. My Bible tells me in Psalms 14 and Romans 3 that there are none that are good. So it is impossible for bad things to happen to good people, seeing how there are no good people. I praise a God who makes good things happen to bad people! I deserve death, but Jesus has given me the gift of eternal life! Romans 6:23