STRIVING VERSUS ABIDING
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1, by Os Hillman
"Unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain." - Psalm 127:1a
What does it mean for the Lord to build the house? It almost seems a contradiction when we consider that we might be the builders in this passage. God wants us to allow Him to build the house. He explains further:
"Unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain. In vain you rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat - for He grants sleep to those He loves" (Psalm 127:1-2).
God is telling us there is a way of working without striving. There is a way to conduct business without sweating and toiling for outcome. His warning to each of us is to avoid thinking that outcome is based on our sweat and toil. Outcome is based on obedience. That outcome is sometimes more than we deserve. Sometimes it is less than we hoped for. His desire for each of us is to see Him working in our daily work life. He wants us to avoid looking to our own effort to gain an outcome.
One day Jesus called out to Peter from the shore of the lake and suggested he throw his net on the other side of the boat. It was this simple act of obedience that yielded a tremendous catch that he would not have received unless he obeyed.
We are called to work; He is called to bring forth the fruit. He is the vine. We are the branches. Fruit comes forth naturally from a healthy tree.
Today, ask God to show you when you enter into striving. Ask Him to show you the difference between loving trust and obedience and striving for outcome. It can be challenging for us to balance this in our daily work experience. He wants to help us walk in this freedom and rest.
Today God Is First (TGIF) devotional message, Copyright by Os Hillman, Marketplace Leaders.
by Bayless Conley
Hebrews 13:20-21 are two verses that give me great encouragement,
Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen.
These verses teach us that God is working in us all the time to bring us to maturity—our destiny in Christ.
A friend of mine shared a brilliant illustration of this one time. He likened God's guidance to that of the Global Positioning System (GPS), one of those systems in cars and phones that guides you to your destination.
A GPS system uses a satellite to give an aerial view, and its sole function is to get you to your destination, your "destiny."
As you travel to your destination, you have a map on the screen, and this little annoying voice talking to you through the whole trip, "Left turn a quarter mile ahead; left turn 150 feet ahead; left turn 50 feet ahead."
If you miss your turn, it immediately computes a new course for you so you can get back to where you are supposed to be. And if you mess up on those directions, it then computes another new course.
In the same way, God has a destiny for us to fulfill, something that fits into His great master plan. By His grace, He is guiding us all the way, even when we get off track. God just readjusts and says, "This is the next thing you need to do to get back into My plan."
Through His "GPS," He is always working to get us where we need to be. Praise God!
Visit the Answers with Bayless Conley website for more ways to Connect with God