When I become selfish I stop seeking God’s will and start searching for my own will. Then I head down any path that looks promising in fulfilling my agenda. When I become impatient with God’s plan, I begin to think maybe mine will produce quicker results. The weird things is, God has ALWAYS been faithful and on my own I have ALWAYS ended up further away from what I actually wanted.
It’s such a struggle to really believe God knows better, no matter how many times he’s followed through. I am so grateful that God works things out for my good regardless of my bunny trails. In all my mistakes, I’ve learned one very important thing: When we live missional lives we create positive fruit and wholeness, and when we live selfish lives it ends in chaos, confusion, and brokenness.
When I cling tight to what I want, or what I’m afraid of losing, I don’t realize that I’m losing a freedom I can only get from God. Surrendering everything to God is so daunting. What if he sends me to Africa where I have to pee in a hole in the ground? What if I look crazy? What if God tells me to talk to strangers? What if I have to sell my house and move to China? I’m so afraid of being uncomfortable. Will I have to stop listening to this music? Can I still get drunk on weekends? and this list goes on. We might want to live for God because we see he is good and loving, but we can’t let go of the things that keep us from really experiencing the freedom God wants for us. We are so afraid of boring, chaste lives full of rules and regulations. But we end up choose these things that keep us captive while we think we are free. God wants what is best for us and usually what we want isn’t what is best. Be don’t realize this because we haven’t tried, or our selfishness is keeping us from remembering that God is faithful.
What is a missional life? It’s when we realize we don’t have to be sent to Africa to me a missionary. Our mission field is right where we are. Look around you and live with intention to see how God can use you in those people’s lives. But if God does want you to go to Africa, he will make it a desire of your heart. I believe God works with your passions and desires to motivate you to do his will. When we live serving others, everything changes, including our desires. Our perspective will broaden and we will realize our selfish desires, fears and sins are so small in comparison. We will realize how they are a waste of time.
Living a life for others isn’t easy, but it is healing; It isn’t comfortable but it leads to joy.
The nature of man is chaos and the fruit of our unbound heart and mind is anger, blame, and fear, as we try and protect our inner selves from the anger, blame, and fear of others. The nature of God is order, and the fruit of his outward facing heart is love, joy, and peace. We become so distracted by protecting our hearts we forget we are all on the same team and end up needing protection from ourselves. Let’s look outward in order to realize we are not alone and love each other the way God loves us. Yes this collision of spirit and flesh, chaos and order, may cause some sparks or even explosions. But when we look outward in love, instead of inward in fear, we bring healing and peace to our broken world and our broken hearts.
“If you do away with the yoke of oppression,
with the pointing finger and malicious talk,
and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry
and satisfy the needs of the oppressed,
then your light will rise in the darkness,
and your night will become like the noonday.
The Lord will guide you always;
he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land
and will strengthen your frame.
You will be like a well-watered garden,
like a spring whose waters never fail.
Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins
and will raise up the age-old foundations;”