Not too long ago I set words to my ponderings and since then it seems I’ve done nothing else other than add more. The problem with contemplating so many possibilities for so much is that it builds on a foundation that presupposes a right answer or direction is possible–if only there was enough time to think, read, research, argue, plan and purpose. And I’m not sure that this is the way to go about deciding which horizon is the one I ought to set foot towards. Oy. Pondering about my ponderings….Pooh bear would be so proud.
And, naturally, how my life is lived affects others for better or worse (or, perhaps more pathetically, with no effect at all). Choosing a direction, whether it is a lifestyle or haircut or even an opinion, leaves me open to either praise (causing me to battle my pride) or flat out character assassination from either frenemy fire or the devil himself (causing me to battle my co-dependent tendencies).
So I suppose I could just do, say, create, be nothing (is that even possible?). Or I could pursue everything, being all things to all people or swimming in so many projects that none of them bare a righteous harvest. What is the balance? How to choose the good, and to know peace through them regardless of the success…or fallout?
I am learning. And I believe the question I (we all?) need to ask more is this:
I really feel for Ananias. There he was, just minding his own business, walking with the Lord the best he knew how, and God impressed upon him to do something that made him tremble. And the man didn’t sit and ponder in his thoughtful place for days (decades?). He simply obeyed. That, methinks, took a lot of faith and courage. AND an ear that was tuned to begin with.
Will the Lord not lead our homes, our families, our projects, our dreams (and ourselves)? Is His arm too short to direct, His Words too few to hear, His Holy Spirit unable to give us direction? No. But we either run ahead making our plans and setting our opinions and crafting new projects and buying new books, OR sit in a puddle of self-defeat not trying anything at all, and then either lament our failures or find security in our successes before we ever think of inquiring, “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?” Just because something *prospers* doesn’t mean it’s blessed of God (read those proverbs). And just because something *fails* doesn’t mean it wasn’t something the Lord foresaw and planned to use for something better.
Maybe, like Ananias, His answer would make us tremble. Maybe He would take away something we love to do or are comfortable with. Maybe He would ask us to detach from someone or something or somedream we dearly loved. Maybe….maybe He would ask us to be His hands and feet, to go and make disciples…and to do that in a way we would never choose for ourselves or in a way we do not see the point of (or the results of). Maybe whatever it is would tick folks off and you’d have to get cozy with their eyeball rolling or false flattery or secret/open disdain. I dunno. But if God Himself is leading….does it really matter? Who do you want to serve, really?
To let God lead, we must allow Him to shape our appetites and what we want to pursue (see Hebrews 2:8), and not pass it through the lens of our flesh or our emotions that, hello, are so deceitful (“hmm….I think that sounds right…feels good…seems like a good idea…..is validated by those so-n-so’s….would grant me favor….give me peace from my enemies…aligns with what I already believe…”)
Are you pondering the tasks you’re about? The projects you’re pursuing? The books/websites/blogs you’re writing/reading/visiting/planning? The housework/marriagework/parentwork? The time you spend on what you’re spending it on? The people you love/hate/lovetohate/hatetolove and how to respond and relate to them?
Whatever you are pondering, let me encourage you to STOP and be quiet a moment (or three). And truly, ask the Lord (if He is your shepherd), “what wilt thou have me to do?” Make reading, studying, and meditating upon His Word a priority so that you can do what you were created to do: hear His voice, and follow.
John 10:27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me…
You can check out the other High Five Mom blogs in the next few days with their ideas on letting the Lord lead, too. Tell them I sent you!