“When God is looking for someone to use He looks to the prison, not to the palace.” ~Rev. Jeff Sanders
Has God ever spoken something to you and you wish that He hadn’t? I don’t mean something chastising, but a word of direction regarding your future or a promise, yet you found yourself wishing that He had just kept you out of the loop?
I am, as some rednecks would say, a “get ‘er done” type person. I consider myself more a follower than a leader, but if I look around and no one is leading, I’ll usually take the reins and do what has to be done. So, if I’m at point A and you tell me I’m eventually going to be at point C, I intend on doing what it takes to get there…because that’s where I’m supposed to be going, right? Why waste time? Why take the 10 mile trail when there’s a 5 mile short cut?
So, when I, apparently at the right time, listened to a cd of a message Bro. Royce Wilson had spoken at BOTT 2009, a minister’s conference hosted every year by a church in Alexandria, I was reminded that, when God’s timing is right, He will begin to speak, but not before then.
You see, before listening to this message, I was getting pretty upset, and was letting God know about it. I was asking Him things like, “Why tell me something if there’s nothing I can do about it?” (Remember, my “take the reins” personality description up above?”) I felt God gently tell me, “Because you asked.”
“Ok…He did get me there.” I did ask. Every major decision I make I pray and fast about. And I had been doing a whole lot of that at this pivotal time in my life. So yes, He had answered and He had answered in more detail than I would ever have expected.
Yet, I still found myself wondering, why, knowing how I am, would you choose to show me this, a Point C with a road block? Then I felt God reply, “So you would have to trust me, and know it was me and me alone who got you there.”
Sometimes, if most people are in a lazy mood, they don’t have much of a problem sitting by letting someone do something on their own…but most people also, that have a high level of respect for someone, if they see them working on a project, etc, that they feel they could lend a hand to help with, are usually going to help, or feel guilty not doing so. And this is all well and good. But we have to be careful not to take this approach with God, remembering that His ways are above our ways and His thoughts are above our thoughts. Usually his plan is so complex and so much better than what we would imagine that we would merely be in the way if we attempted to “help”.
Yes, faith without works is dead, but sometimes our “works” simply has to be to pray and continue to do what’s right.
Bro. Wilson’s message was about being a “stranger in the land of fulfillment”.
He talked about how when God gives you a promise, you are not crazy; it will come to pass. His references were to the story of Joseph. He also said you are not wrong to share that “dream”/ promise with people. It is true that they may take it the wrong way, but you are not wrong to share it. He goes on to talk about the different stages of fulfillment…One being the prison. This is where the words from Rev. Sanders stood out to me.. “When God is looking for someone to use He looks to the prison, not to the palace.” God doesn’t usually pull someone straight from the palace to do his work. There are things He wants you to learn so you are ready when He places you where He wants you. Sometimes you may have to go through many trials to reach this point. Perhaps the greater the call the greater the trials? Yes, this is a scary concept, but the more and more I read the bios of people of God who have been used mightily, the more this seems to be the case. Obviously it is not because God doesn’t care, it because He has faith you will endure, come out as gold, and will be able to be used at a level you never would have been prepared to have been used had you just experienced the palace, and not the prison also.
So, are you willing to watch God work? To trust Him with a hands off approach in whatever trial you may be facing?
You might be wondering, how can anything good happen or change if I’m just standing still? Sometimes you don’t have to understand something. You just have to believe God’s word & trust Him.
And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD, which he will shew to you to day: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen to day, ye shall see them again no more for ever. ~Exodus 14:13
Ye shall not need to fight in this battle: set yourselves, stand ye still, and see the salvation of the LORD with you, O Judah and Jerusalem: fear not, nor be dismayed; to morrow go out against them: for the LORD will be with you. ~II Corinthians 20:17
Hearken unto this, O Job: stand still, and consider the wondrous works of God. ~Job 37:14
Relax, Stand Still, & Watch. God is in control!
The earth is the LORD's, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein. ~Psalm 24:1