Fighting God

imagesI learned two new things in church yesterday: Jesus’ return to earth will be through the East Gate of the Temple, and the Muslims have blocked off that gate. I smiled at this!

If the Muslims are right and Jesus is NOT going to return, then why did they block off the gate? If they were sure about this, would they need to block the gate? My children were sometimes afraid that monsters might come in through the windows; I comforted them, but I never once put up monster-proof bars.

On the other hand, if the Muslims are wrong and Jesus will indeed return, will blocking the gate stop Him? His return will pretty much indicate that He is who He claimed to be, in which case no bricks will hold against Him. That is so like us. I’m going to fix this thing I don’t want to happen so it won’t happen! But if it’s God’s plan, how would I stop it?

One of my favorite stories is from Acts 5, when the Pharisees unsuccessfully forbid Peter and the other apostles from preaching Christ. Gamaliel, the highly respected Pharisee, wisely tells the Counsel: “Stay away from these men and let them alone, for if this plan is of men, it will be overthrown; but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them; or else you may even be found fighting against God.”

In our own desire to have things the way we want, I’m pretty sure we often find ourselves fighting against God. Perhaps He offers us a new job, but we’re afraid to make the change. Perhaps we advise our children to choose the more secure path, but God wants to teach them to trust Him, which requires them to take a risk. We may have learned His voice as He said we would, but we strain to hear Him against our own call to control, self-protect, and minimize risk.

One clue has emerged to help in these situations: if an opportunity calls to me that requires a leap outside my comfort zone, that is likely to be God asking me to trust Him. I’ve noticed (with me and with others) that I really do not control the outcome of my life, even when I think I do. God ultimately is in charge. The leap looks scary, but it is my only chance grasp opportunities outside my reach.

2 thoughts on “Fighting God

  1. We may have learned His voice as He said we would, but we strain to hear Him against our own call to control, self-protect, and minimize risk.

    One clue has emerged to help in these situations: if an opportunity calls to me that requires a leap outside my comfort zone, that is likely to be God asking me to trust Him.

    Susan, I loved this part. Control, self-protect & minimize risk (wow, those are all Abundant Life killers). Living & loving lavishly is how I want to be known and remembered. Leaping & trusting God is what LIFE is all about.

    Thank you for the reminder and concise explanation.

    Lynn W. Mandeville

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