Thursday, July 20, 2023

Not My Will but Yours

Not My Will but Yours 
by David Brenneman 

We really really want our will to happen in our little corner of the world.  We want an image of ourselves that we approve of to be accepted, honored, held in high esteem, by others. 

We do.  Really we do.  It matters not if it's Believers or the unbelieving that are considered, everyone does this.  

Jesus taught differently.  It had bugged me in reading in the book of Acts, until last night, about how many times Paul was warned of what awaited him if he continued to Jerusalem.  He very much was being Christ-like.  He told the people who would weep at his determination to be there by Pentecost...he was ready to die for Jesus if that indeed was to be his future.  He was convinced in the Spirit to make this journey, no matter the cost.

It's our will that gets in the way of growing in Christ.  It's us who keep trying to manipulate Jesus to get us what we desire.  We really don't see the manipulation but we indeed are doing it when all we do is open in prayer with a list of demands. 

A very significant prayer happened between Jacob and his brother Esau.  
When we pray with the right heart attitude be ready for our own heart and mind to be changed as well as the person or people we pray for.  That's what happened in Jacob's prayer. 

We indeed will be hurt by others...the path towards healing goes through the arms of forgiveness.  Be it forgiving ourselves or the other party.  We are NOT suggested to forgive. We are commanded to forgive as Christ forgave us. No, it's not impossible, because we would never be given an impossible task by God that would be out of character for Jesus. 

"For if you forgive other people for their offenses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive other people, then your Father will not forgive your offenses." Matthew 6:14-15 NASB. 

Our journey in life as a Believer is to become what Jesus desires us to be and in the manner that He chooses for us, that is the crux of being His workmanship. 

We shouldn't try to be more than what He's called us to be unless we get definitive proof from the Spirit to do so. 

Honestly, and with all sincerity, we don't choose a different path in life because we were hurt by others.  If we have Christ Jesus in us, we follow what example He gave us.  He said to His Father: "saying, “Father, if You are willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Yours be done.”" Luke 22:42 NASB95. 

If we follow in the character of Christ, our prayers ought to begin to mirror those of Jesus. 

Pain and suffering are a part of life as a child of God.  Jesus said ahead of time that those who desire to live Godly in Christ Jesus will suffer.  A Spiritual fact of life.

Forgiveness begins with you and I. 
We first must forgive ourselves.  Many times our shortsightedness gets us into trouble.  Sometimes we neglect to obey something in Christ that at the time didn't seem to be significant but later on in life we see it had everything to do with our current situation.

Secondly...there are no problems in God's eyes. Just situations that He's already infinitely more aware of than you or I. 

Next, don't assume or presume.  Don't get set on any particular outcome.  If Jesus is the leader of our lives, He will dictate the path when we trust and obey. 

When obstacles come, and we are told in the Bible that they indeed will come, we take them to the Lord in prayer.  We do not run on our assumptions.  

We love to proclaim it when we readily see God making a way where once there was no way.  We gladly declare that God is good.  

When things aren't going so well we wonder where is God in all of this.  He never left. He is still leading if we are still obediently following. 

If we look at our pursuit of it Christ-centered?  Is our day to day our trying to yet still get our will to be done?

Paul's words of "But the Lord stood with me and gave me strength"...mirror those of Joseph.  Joseph knew not why he was going through so much emotional pain. His family betrayed him. Sold him even. He is tossed out of that frying pan and into a skillet after being falsely accused. Then from that into another fire. He had nobody in his family until God brought his family to him.  But even when that happened...look closely...Joseph acted in the character of Christ Jesus.  Why?  Read what the Scripture says...the Lord was with him. 

In your pain of needing to forgive remember what all Jesus said and did.  He forgave and as followers of Christ so should we.

Our first priority isn't justice or even whatever is fair.  It's to live in the character of Christ Jesus.  That is seeking His will to be done on Earth as it is in Heaven. 

Facing others who aren't living life in Christ as they ought and it's causing pain in your relationship?  Create a war room.  Dedicate time in prayer from a forgiving heart as Christ would be doing.  

What a friend we have in Jesus,
all our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry
everything to God in prayer!
O what peace we often forfeit,
O what needless pain we bear,
all because we do not carry
everything to God in prayer!

Have we trials and temptations?
Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged;
take it to the Lord in prayer!
Can we find a friend so faithful
who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness;
take it to the Lord in prayer!

Are we weak and heavy laden,
cumbered with a load of care?
Precious Savior, still our refuge--
take it to the Lord in prayer!
Do your friends despise, forsake you?
Take it to the Lord in prayer!
In his arms he'll take and shield you;
you will find a solace there.

What a Friend We Have in Jesus 
-Author: Joseph Medlicott Scriven (1855)

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