Tuesday, October 22, 2013
To preach the gospel in the regions beyond you, (2 Corinthians 10:16 KJV)
I think of that verse when giving directions to our house. We certainly live “beyond”!! No one simply stops by on their way somewhere else, they have to be coming here. And, within a half-mile or so from our house, there is no telephone signal, and GPS stops working to. In fact, part of my directions are, “When you think you are lost and start to call, you’ll find there is no cell service. That means you are on the right road so continue around the curve for half a mile.”
I had an out-of-state visitor this weekend. I had sent Google maps along with directions, but her GPS worked perfectly and got her right to our front porch. Wonderful!! The GPS didn’t work so well on her way back to DFW, adding a bit of frustration on her journey home.
I’ve seen that acronym shown as God’s Plan of Salvation – in fact, I used it in a blog earlier this year. I also think of it as God’s Perfect Solution. And, I think we can reach places in our lives where we are unable to receive instructions from Him that provide solutions to our problems.
Oh, He’s still there – we’ve moved away from His will and are ignoring the signals He continues to provide. We become confused, frustrated and look for ways out without considering reaching out to Him. We think that since we got ourselves into this, surely we can get out – and maybe He won’t even notice? Foolish thought, isn’t it?
Perhaps we’re as Samuel was, thinking someone else is calling us. If so, we need to listen to Eli’s advice:
Therefore Eli said unto Samuel, Go, lie down: and it shall be, if he call thee, that thou shalt say, Speak, LORD; for thy servant heareth. So Samuel went and lay down in his place. (1 Samuel 3:9 KJV)
How can we know when it’s God speaking? John tells us there are many false spirits:
Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. (1 John 4:1 KJV)
John also explained how to tell the difference:
Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world. (1 John 4:2-3 KJV)
Plain enough, isn’t it? Especially when Paul pretty much gave the same advice earlier:
But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ. For if he that cometh preacheth another Jesus, whom we have not preached, or if ye receive another spirit, which ye have not received, or another gospel, which ye have not accepted, ye might well bear with him. (2 Corinthians 11:3-4 KJV)
We have a standard whereby to measure the direction we’re headed, the advice we receive and the goals we set in life. Use them wisely.